Building a Successful Volunteer Culture: Finding Meaning in Service in the Jewish Community

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Jewish Lights Pub., 2009 - Business & Economics - 172 pages
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A step-by-step guide to cultivating volunteers who thrive within the Jewish community.

"We can never forget that volunteering is a two-way street. Volunteers must be motivated, but volunteer organizations also need to maximize volunteer satisfaction. Blaming one or the other for the failures prevalent today in the world of Jewish volunteering helps no one. The search is for a win-win strategy."
--from the Introduction

Cultivating successful volunteers in the twenty-first century is increasingly more challenging. Budgets are tight, hands are few and competition for a person's discretionary time is severe. How do you develop and maintain the volunteers who are essential to the vitality of your organization and community? What can you do to avoid volunteer burnout?

Rabbi Charles Simon draws on over thirty years of professional experience to provide you with the resources you need to build and retain a thriving volunteer culture for your organization--regardless of size or complexity. In a straightforward, accessible style, Simon provides you with:

  • Methods for analyzing your organization's needs
  • Innovative ways for creating an environment that strengthens volunteer involvement and satisfaction while increasing your organization's effectiveness
  • Plans for developing or modifying your leadership framework, positions and styles
  • The groundwork for creating a language of inclusion that will motivate and inspire your volunteers
  • Practical tips for establishing healthy, meaningful interpersonal relationships with and among your volunteers

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About the author (2009)

Rabbi Charles Simon , executive director of the 30,000-member Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs, has been developing vehicles to increase volunteer involvement for more than thirty years. He is the author of Building a Successful Volunteer Culture: Finding Meaning in Service in the Jewish Community (Jewish Lights), several books on improving community prayer, a regular contributor to CJ Voices of Conservative/Masorti Judaism Magazine and a contributor to Commentary Magazine and Reform Judaism. He teaches regularly at The Jewish Theological Seminary in New York and American Jewish University in Los Angeles.Rabbi Charles Simon is available to speak on the following topics: Could You Attend Chelsea's Wedding? The Status of Intermarrieds in Conservative Judaism The Leadership Dilemma Creating a Successful Volunteer Culture (Two-Three Lectures) Where are the Men and What Does This Mean?

Dr. Ron Wolfson, visionary educator and inspirational speaker, is Fingerhut Professor of Education at American Jewish University in Los Angeles and a cofounder of Synagogue 3000. He is author of Relational Judaism: Using the Power of Relationships to Transform the Jewish Community; The Seven Questions You're Asked in Heaven: Reviewing and Renewing Your Life on Earth; Be Like God: God's To-Do List for Kids; God's To-Do List: 103 Ways to Be an Angel and Do God's Work on Earth; Hanukkah, Passover and Shabbat, all Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs Art of Jewish Living family guides to spiritual celebrations; The Spirituality of Welcoming: How to Transform Your Congregation into a Sacred Community; A Time to Mourn, a Time to Comfort: A Guide to Jewish Bereavement and Comfort; and, with Rabbi Lawrence A. Hoffman, What You Will See Inside a Synagogue (all Jewish Lights), a book for children ages 6 and up. He contributed to May God Remember: Memory and Memorializing in Judaism--Yizkor , Who by Fire, Who by Water --Un'taneh Tokef, All These Vows --Kol Nidre, and We Have Sinned: Sin and Confession in Judaism --Ashamnu and Al Chet (all Jewish Lights). Dr. Ron Wolfson is available to speak on the following topics: Building Good Tents: Envisioning the Synagogue of the Future God ' s To-Do List The Seven Questions You're Asked in Heaven Blessings and Kisses: The Power of the Jewish Family A Time to Mourn, a Time to ComfortClick here to contact the author.

Shelley Lindauer has been the executive director of Women of Reform Judaism since 2003. Her path to professional Jewish communal service began as a volunteer at Temple Sinai of Roslyn Heights, New York, where she eventually became executive vice president. Formerly, she was president of Media Alternatives Group, Inc., and Shelley Lindauer, CPA, PC.

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