UUA stewardship consultants provide assessment visits to congregations to help determine a congregation’s readiness to begin a strategic planning process, launch an annual budget drive or a capital campaign. There are three outcomes of an assessment visit.
First, an assessment visit provides an opportunity for your congregation to get an objective assessment from a UUA stewardship consultant. Prior to the visit, congregational leaders send many documents to the consultant. Once on site, the consultant gathers more information in a series of meetings with key constituents, often including the following professional and lay leaders.
- Annual budget drive chair
- Director of religious education
- Strategic planning committee chair
- Any other professional staff members
- Building/grounds committee chair
- Finance committee chair
- Members of the governing body
- Person responsible for nurturing new members
- Person responsible for coordinating volunteers
Second, an assessment visit provides your congregation with specific recommendations to get “from here to there.” Based on all the gathered information, the consultant lists several steps necessary to allow your congregation to reach its long-term goals. These recommendations are given verbally at the end of the assessment visit, and are then followed by a written summary. The recommendations may address the following issues.
- Five-year strategic plan
- Capital campaign
- Planned giving program
- Facilities planning
- Annual budget drive
- Commercial loans|
- UUA loans, loan guarantees, grants and awards
Third, an assessment visit clarifies how the Congregational Stewardship Services program can be helpful to your congregation. The program has provided consulting services to hundreds of congregations since 1985 and each consultant brings special skills, as well as the combined skills and experience of the other consultants. Each is prepared to guide and coach your congregation through all aspects of your comprehensive stewardship needs.
I would like to hear from some congregational leaders that have experience using the UUA consultants for stewardship. Not just good/bad, but what specifically worked? What did the consultant do that you could not from within?