Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Benefits of Volunteering at Conference

Jenn here.

Most of us think of church or local ministries when we consider volunteering, but there are plenty of volunteer opportunities at the ACFW Conference. It isn't only about writing workshops and meetings with agents and editors, although those are wonderful assets to the conference. More importantly, God is at work during prayer time, praise and worship, devotions, in chance meetings in the hallways, foyers, meal times--and through volunteer opportunities.

Volunteering offers great benefits whether it's your first ACFW Conference or your tenth.

1) It gives you a chance to meet other writers on a deeper level because you get an opportunity to work with them in a way you wouldn't experience in a brief conversation or just passing through. You could meet people who make a huge difference in your life and will be a part of your future for years to come.

2) It's a chance to give back to an organization and other writers who have helped you grow and develop in your own work.

3) It provides an opportunity to learn about how things work in ACFW and the publishing industry.

4) Sometimes it gives new writers a chance to meet and talk to seasoned writers, editors and agents in a unique setting that might not be possible at any other time.

5) It brings those special moments when God can use you to touch someone with a kind word or an encouraging blessing. Or it might be you who receives the blessing.

6) It can help you feel fulfilled in a busy conference with so much going on.

7) Most importantly, the ACFW Conference can't exist without volunteers.

Even if you don't get a chance to sign up and volunteer this year, while you are there, pay attention to the many volunteers who are working to help make your conference experience a blessing. Remember to pray for them, thank them, and encourage them. Think about a volunteer role you might like to try next year in 2010.

For available volunteer positions, check out Margaret Daley's post on Enhancing Your Conference Experience Through Volunteering.


  1. Great post, Jenn! I remember some of the most fun times last year was the hustle and bustle at the registration desk. It was cool seeing a lot of faces both new and those I was already familiar with.

  2. Jenn,
    I remember the first time I volunteered at a conferece. I was so scared but shortly found out there was nothing to fear. Everyone is so nice. I really recommend doing it.
    Thanks for the post.

  3. Great advice, Jenn. Volunteering is a great way to meet those "names" you've seen on the loop. That moment of recognition and it's like old home week:-)