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To and Through the Volunteer

Published on August 16, 2023

This article appears in the Spring 2023 issue of the FCA Donor Publication. The FCA publication is a gift from our FCA staff to all donors giving $50 or more annually. For more information about giving, visit here.

Since the very beginning of FCA, we have been a volunteer-intensive ministry.

Volunteers have been a key to our long-term success, as sports impact all kinds of people. As a local, grassroots movement, FCA depends on volunteers to be involved in every aspect of what we do. Volunteers are the primary way we minister to coaches and athletes.

“We’re committed to giving the ministry away,” said Dan Britton, Chief Field Officer. “We often say ministry doesn’t happen because a staff person showed up; great ministry happens when staff leave because volunteers are mobilized to make an impact.”

Everything FCA volunteers do makes either a direct or indirect connection to life change. Without volunteers, the needs of coaches and athletes would not be met. Bibles would not be bought and distributed. Athletes would not get invited to camps. Student-leaders would not be equipped and athletes would not be empowered to reach campuses. Imagine the people who wouldn’t even hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Is this the year for you to follow the nudge of God further into sports ministry? If you have a passion to serve coaches and athletes, FCA wants to help. Let’s team up to see the world transformed.

Recently, we reimagined how to best serve and train our volunteers. We rolled out E3 Training for both staff and volunteers. E3: Engage. Equip. Empower. is an intentional strategy that models how to make disciples through a discipleship journey. We want to see coaches and athletes know and grow in Christ, and lead others to do the same. 
We now have an easy, online way to train up those who want to serve coaches and athletes alongside FCA.

FCA partners with volunteers and walks with them to determine how God is uniquely calling them and where they are being led to serve.

Huddle Leader
A Huddle is a consistent small group of coaches or athletes designed to engage, equip and empower them to make disciples who make disciples. This is what FCA is all about! As a Huddle Leader, your goal is to create an environment in the sports community where the Gospel is made known and lived out.“We often say ministry doesn’t happen because a staff person showed up; great ministry happens when staff leave because volunteers are mobilized to make an impact.” 
-Dan Britton, Chief Field Officer

Character Coach
A Character Coach is a volunteer who engages, equips and empowers coaches and athletes spiritually through personal, character and leadership development. The mobilization of Character Coaches is a key initiative for FCA as we pursue the vision to see the world
transformed by Jesus Christ through the influence of coaches and athletes. Giving a weekly devotion or character talk is not being a Character Coach; that’s being a guest speaker. A Character Coach establishes a consistent presence with specific teams and sets the tone for future ministry opportunities in Huddles, 1-on-1 discipleship and through events.

Local Leadership Board Member
A Local Leadership Board Member is a key volunteer who supports the ministry by leveraging their influence through prayer, serving and giving. By doing so, Board Members are one of the primary strategies for ministry and financial stability. Board Members provide both prayerful and wise counsel from their giftedness and experiences as they serve on board teams, which will support ministry growth.

Event Volunteers
Other ways to become a volunteer include being Event Volunteers at FCA Camps, Fields of Faith, banquets, golf outings or retreats. FCA wants to join you on your journey to invest your gifts and talents into the lives of others.


PASTOR CECIL BELLEPHANT a9596984-4240-4e3c-8b92-53d8a864e104
Rochester, Minnesota
Volunteers as a Southeast FCA Board Member, Site Coordinator with FCA Basketball and FCA Flag Football Coach

If you win, praise God! If you lose, praise God! I volunteer with FCA because it gives me the opportunity to inspire and influence kids and their parents to have an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ. Volunteering with FCA gives me the rare opportunity to speak life over kids, a message that goes far beyond the concept of winning and losing. I teach them that whether they’re on the court, on the field, or in life—if you win, praise God! And if you lose, praise God!

Volunteering with FCA also gives me the chance to teach kids Christian life skills like how to play “Unity Ball” versus “Superman Ball.” “Superman Ball” is to play selfishly, for the individual shine or accolades, but “Unity Ball” teaches them how to play as a team, a unit and to play unselfishly, thinking of your fellow player before yourself. (James 2:8)

Glanzer_Thomas_BADGE_2021TOM GLANZER
Huron, South Dakota
Volunteers with FCA Motocross (MX), Ice Hockey, and as a Huddle Leader for FCA MX in Minnesota and Guatemala

I volunteer with FCA because I care about kids, and I want to help young people make decisions to follow Christ and the simple rules for life that are given in the Bible. FCA has been a part of my spiritual journey for over four decades now. I was an FCA camper back in the ‘80s. In the ‘90s, I was a part of the FCA Huddle at South Dakota State University. Now, I give financially and volunteer one week a year to lead a Huddle at FCA MX Camp in Minnesota.

Our middle son, Brecken, races dirt bikes, and we spend a lot of Sundays on the road at different races. For our family’s spiritual well-being, FCA’s MX program is key to keeping us close to Christ. When I see my son and other kids his age changing their lifestyles because of the impact that FCA programs have on them, that is a call that I need to be involved. It is what I am supposed to do as a Christian, husband, father, coach and friend.
8c39a9d8-0667-4546-9bec-e92a2df8eeddYVETTE HAMILTON
Brooklyn, New York
Volunteers as a WNBA Chaplain for NY Liberty and as a NYC FCA Board Member

I volunteer with FCA because it’s an exhilarating joy to be a small part of a vast organization that has the privilege of injecting the life-changing Gospel and the testimony of the unconditional love of Jesus Christ into the hearts of the next generation through the eyes of sports. As a Volunteer, Board Member and Chaplain, I am involved in the ministry of FCA at multiple vantage points.

53e8c8c8-ccf0-43b5-8f70-18e41edf08f5ALICE HOU
San Jose, California
Volunteers with FCA All Ability Camp

I volunteer with FCA because of the blessing it is for me and for those who are touched by the events. Ultimately, God gets all the glory for everything, and He helps use His people to be a blessing to others at FCA.

Erik Jastrzemski 1ERIK JASTRZEMSKI
Kitty Hawk, North Carolina
Volunteers with FCA Surf and Skate

As a former public school teacher, I volunteered as an advisor for multiple Huddles in Alaska and Virginia. Now, I speak at local FCA Huddles in the Outer Banks of North Carolina and direct an Action Sports ministry called Camp Radiant where we partner with FCA to put on multiple day/night surf and skate camps as well as one-off events at local beaches and skate parks. I volunteer because for more than 60 years, FCA has been building a framework to share the Gospel with coaches and athletes. Locking arms with an organization that has been so successful, like FCA, just makes sense.

While I have volunteered with traditional sports such as basketball, football, baseball and soccer, my focus has shifted to Action Sports over the past three years. This world is such fertile ground; there are so many kids who have made conscious efforts to focus their energies on getting better at individual action sports. FCA is pursuing athletes who compete in these once marginalized sports (skateboarding, scootering, BMX, surfing, snowboarding, rock climbing, etc.). It is truly an honor and a blessing to work with such a “well-oiled” organization like FCA. The programs and resources that flow out of FCA Action Sports allow for volunteers to spend more time developing relationships with athletes and less time developing curriculum. It’s leading to a more effective ministry.

5f988c8b-3710-45fc-b83d-95a331795d9dBOB WHITE
Athens, Georgia
Volunteers with FCA Outdoors Archery, Shooting Sports and Fishing

I enjoy mentoring and discipleship opportunities, and I feel the need to serve others because I had mentors who fostered my love and appreciation for the outdoors when I was of middle and high school age. As I’ve grown older, I have a greater appreciation and awareness of God’s presence when I am in His creation. I feel strongly that there is no better way to awaken and engage our spirits than to participate in God’s creation. No joy exceeds sharing this love of the outdoors and the opportunities in it. FCA Outdoors activities are welcome opportunities to give back.

Indianapolis, Indiana
Volunteers as a WNBA Chaplain for the Indiana Fever

I volunteer with FCA because I love to see God at work in an arena that has been a part of my life since the third grade: the game of basketball. To be able to share and serve is very fulfilling, but it also challenges me to make sure I’m staying connected to God as well. I grew up in the church, but the first time I heard about how God values me as an athlete was through FCA in high school. Volunteering with FCA allows me the opportunity to share with the ladies that they are known and loved for more than just their abilities and talents on the court.
Texas Tech University (TTU), Lubbock, Texas
Volunteers as a Huddle Leader for a TTU football coaches’ wives Bible study, a mentor to female student-athletes, a guest speaker at the campus Huddle and a prayer counselor at Fields of Faith

I believe in leading and loving coaches and athletes like Christ. Through FCA this past year, I have been empowered to serve as the Huddle Leader for the TTU football coaches’ wives Bible study. The Bible is the most valuable tool we can equip coaches with to navigate the unique pressures and responsibilities that come with coaching in today’s culture. I love how FCA ministers to and through the coach by helping them win where it matters most: at home. Walking alongside coaches’ wives is a strategic opportunity to support their marriages, families and careers with truth. It is humbling and rewarding to see the way God’s Word is impacting not only the marriages represented in our Huddle, but how it’s also influencing other marriages on the coaching staff and every athlete who looks up to our coaches.
If the talents, gifts and skills of volunteers like you are invested, teams, schools, committees—even countries—will be transformed by Jesus Christ. We desire to team up with volunteers who are passionate about impacting the world of sports.

Are you ready to be used by God in ways you never imagined? You have the opportunity to develop gifts and skills you didn’t know you had. Courageously assume new levels of Kingdom responsibilities this year, and step into the greater promises God has for you.

Find out more about how you can volunteer with FCA.