Letter from the Executive Director: Major Changes to RESPONSE

“We hear you.”  

That sounds like you just said something. In reality, we have heard you for while. And we have been paying attention. CVN has been assessing what we can do to meet your needs. 

An example is the recently completed Recruitment Task Force that brought together CVN member program staff and campus staff to surface new ideas and strategies. We have many good ideas to work with that may lead to new efforts. And we will need more help from members. We will share more information soon. 

I also hope that you have heard us. I hope we have communicated the reasons CVN has adjusted strategies, shifted focus, and explored new ways to support you. December’s annual member meeting was an attempt to honor the concerns you have expressed that recruiting is more challenging than ever and that you would like CVN to assist in addressing these new challenges 

Some of our recent efforts have focused on making connections between the promotion of faith-based service and program changes that can excite potential volunteers. We are learning together that attracting and retaining diverse applicants and volunteers requires reducing barriers and examining structural transformation. Many of you are doing the tough work to determine what these processes require. That visionary, programmatic, step-by-step journey will make a difference. CVN has felt called to use our focus and resources to catalyze your discernment along those lines. To further support your journeys, we will improve another core benefit of membership.  

CVN will begin to transition RESPONSE from a well-known print resource to a sophisticated online presence optimized to reach wider audiences and attract new engagement. 

RESPONSE 2023 will be finalized in the coming months and will be the last printed version. (We will make some adjustments to extend its shelf life.) The directory produced following RESPONSE 2023 will be fully virtual. It represents the anchor of a more robust online marketing strategy for CVN programs and the field of faith-based service.  

CVN staff and Board will explore facets of this strategy over the coming months. Our goal is to re-envision promotion across all online channels and emerging platforms (social media, short- and long-form video, paid advertising, and more) to help you better tell your story. Take, for example, this new visual on our website, the Member Map. Now potential volunteers can be inspired to visit your listing because they see you! We will assess how this strategy can relate to traditional recruiting efforts that are changing.         

Thanks for being in this process of listening, reflecting, and acting with us. Please reach out to me or any CVN staff with thoughts or questions.  

With you in service,

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