CULTIVATE: A Learning Cohort for New Volunteer Managers – [Application Now Open]

Julie Darnold

CULTIVATE: A Learning Cohort for New Volunteer Managers – [Application Now Open]

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Send Me St. Louis

A learning cohort for Christian volunteer managers new to the field with “new” loosely defined as those who have been in their role for 6-9 months or those who feel like they need to hit the reset button. The learning cohort will provide participation in gatherings focused on “deeper topics” related to volunteer management that line up with Send Me’s lens and expertise and access to area volunteer management training.


Being new to the work of volunteer management can feel overwhelming, especially when you are potentially learning both a new profession and a new church or organizational culture. Through all the onboarding, it is important to remember how important and sacred your work is. You have been entrusted with the responsibility of helping unleash peoples’ God given potential, helping them connect their gifts, passions, and talents to God’s work in your church or organization.

While there are plenty of “nuts and bolts” to learn, Send Me also believes it is important to ask deeper questions about your work as a Christian in the volunteer management field. With this cohort, Send Me is working to create a unique space that leverages our Gospel-focused lens, helps cultivate a solid foundation for the work, and provides access to the tremendous volunteer management resources of other training organizations in St. Louis (e.g., Metropolitan Volunteer Management Association and United Way).


Accepting now through Feb. 1, 2022. Apply Here.


Seeking 10-12 participants

Participant Expectations
  • Participant context – church, faith-based nonprofit, or person of faith in a secular setting
  • Paid or unpaid
  • “New” to the role or position; just starting or seeking a reset
  • Have the bandwidth to commit to this experience. Send Me and its partner organizations will work hard to deliver quality content and a platform for growth, but participants who wish to gain the most from the experience need to be available and engaged in the learning process.
What’s Included
  • Four gatherings facilitated by Send Me:
    1. Tuesday, Feb. 22, 9-11 a.m. – Spirituality/Theology of Volunteering
      • While plenty of volunteer management best practices cross the faith-based/non-faith-based sectors, those who approach the role with a Christian lens bring a different motivation to the work. Jeff Cloeter, Senior Pastor at Christ Memorial Lutheran Church and author of Loved & Sent, will facilitate an interactive discussion on the spirituality and theology of volunteering, helping to establish a proper foundation for your work with volunteers.
    2. Tuesday, April 26, 9-11 a.m. – The Impact of Your Personality on Your Role as Volunteer Manager
      • An effective volunteer manager knows who they are and how that can both help and hinder their work with volunteers. This session will help you reflect on the findings and implications of the StrengthsFinder assessment, which will be completed prior.
    3. Tuesday, May 24, 9-11 a.m. – Leading Change as a Volunteer Manager
      • A volunteer manager may not make high-level decisions for their church or organization, but your efforts to effectively manage and deploy volunteers impact everything! This session will help you think about leading change within volunteer management and the broader church or organization.
    4. November (date and time tbd) – Debrief and Reflect
      • Participants will gather to debrief and reflect on the cohort experience, distilling key themes, takeaways, and next steps to thrive in their role.
  • Memberships/access to:
    1. Metropolitan Volunteer Management Association (MVMA) yearlong subscription to attend trainings of your choosing
    2. United Way Volunteer Management Training Series (can attend up to four trainings in March 2022)
      • Tuesday, March 1, 1:30-4:30 p.m. – Understanding Volunteering and Planning a Volunteer Program 
      • Tuesday, March 8, 1:30-4:30 p.m. – Recruiting and Placing Volunteers 
      • Tuesday, March 15, 9 a.m.-noon – Orienting, Training, Supervising, and Recognizing Volunteers 
      • Tuesday, March 22, 1:30-3 p.m. – Evaluating Volunteer Programs
  • StrengthsFinder personality assessment (top five strengths)
  • Welcome packet outlining key resources for effective volunteer management
Cost to Participate

$50 per participant* (value $250+)
*Financial assistance is available; please contact Matt Miller at to discuss.

Next Steps
  1. Click Here to Apply.
  2. After completing an application, you will be prompted to schedule a short Zoom call with Matt Miller (Send Me) and Rebekah Miller (Lutheran Foundation) to discuss.
  3. Do you know someone else who might be a good fit? Share this webpage.

Contact Matt Miller at