24 Jul Prioritizing Community Service
No man is an island.
“We” are better than “me”.
Dear Christian Radio,
It doesn’t matter how you say it, the foundation is the same – we can accomplish so much more when we collaborate, work together, and pool our resources to have the greatest impact we possibly can.
It is true that in Christian radio we may be operating with limited financial resources, limited team size, and limited time – we’re all stretched thin. These limitations may be obstacles, but they are not roadblocks. We can actively seek out opportunities to expand our resources by plugging in to our communities…and, bonus, that helps keep us local and relevant, deepening relationships with those we serve.
Actively seeking out community service opportunities is a great way to expand your impact. Service projects or campaigns give you the chance to engage your listeners in unique ways, connecting them to things that they’re passionate about. And, perhaps, giving parents an opportunity to teach their kids the importance of serving others.
Getting started in community service is so easy! Perhaps you’ve been thinking of a project yourself – a need in your community that you know needs to be filled, but you lack the resources to make it happen. Have you considered finding a local business or other non-profit that you could approach about a partnership? They bring the resources and skills, you bring the promotional arm to recruit volunteers and spread the word.
Or, perhaps there is a start-up non-profit in your community that is trying to establish their place, but they lack the exposure to reach those who can benefit from their services. Set up a meeting! Take time to hear them out, see what their plans are, and then try and find a place where your station can fit. Their need may not just be on-air mentions, it could be the recruitment of volunteers, or finding additional partners to get involved. You never know what doors God could be opening for you!
There is no “one” way to do community service. Find what works for your team, and what speaks to your mission and vision. Within PAR, our stations have participated in a variety of service projects: disaster relief, diaper drives, food drives, recovery support, construction projects, support for moms in the hospital with sick kids, outreach in local nursing homes, and more. If you have zero idea where to start or what to do, talk to your team. Ask your staff members what hot buttons exist in the community. Find out what they are hearing at church and what they would like to see the station do. This will not only open your eyes to a need, but it could increase your team’s buy-in tenfold.
John 13:35 says, “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” In the end, that’s what community service is all about – loving one another, helping each other out, offering kindness and compassion to those in need.
Dear Christian Radio…
1. Get out of your building. If your ministry exists entirely within the walls of your building or the events you host, get out! Open your eyes to the needs around you and open your hearts to how you can help.
2. Play to your strengths. If you know you have team members that are passionate about a cause, or even have a particular skill set, tap into it! Your team’s support will be your greatest asset when it comes to implementing community service.
3. Partner up. There are organizations in your community right now that could offer a mutually beneficial partnership. Find them, seek them out, set up meetings, and dream BIG.