About 30% of our regular volunteers are men (not including things like VBS). The greatest challenge is really a matter of the male perspective of children and youth ministry. We're seeing a change in that with new leadership rising.
Michael, we have about 40% men in ours (it's a special needs ministry). Problem: I think men, from the time they're young, are socialized into seeing teaching children as more of a woman's role.
Small things can make a difference! Take a look at your ministry to see if it has a predominantly male or female flavor. Reprint children's ministries letterhead, if necessary, rejecting the traditional pink stationery! When referring to children's teachers in print or from the pulpit, use masculine pronouns. Most importantly, highlight male workers through testimonies and newsletter articles whenever possible.
We have 15 children attend monthly Kidz Club. I know the numbers may sound small. But, its great for the size of our church. Anyway, we have Stan who loves childrens ministry as much as I do. He is a lawyer by day. He will teach Sunday school to the preschoolers and make them laugh. He loves to be involved. My husband will help me with thinking up games and setting them up. We average 22-30 kids each Sunday for Sunday school. Stan is the only man who will sign up to teach.
At the very large church, in the midwest, it was 50-55%
My current much smaller, young church in the south, it is 35% now.
If I include youth workers, around 30% are male. If I do not include youth, there are 2 men, including me.
I do not think that this is due exclusively to the "male" perspective. Certainly it is for nursery. I think that our culture has dictated this attitude, that men do not work with children, and it is a direct result of the destruction of the male image in our culture. Men are portrayed as comical and non-caring. Certainly the image of a man raising his children by himself is totally removed in media. The church simply reflects the culture.
While this may have an educational aspect, it is actually a spiritual problem, even affecting the family.
So, the biggest road-block is over-coming our culture, and getting back to the truth about men and women. Education, inspiration, and prayer.
In our leadership team which are paid part-time positions we have 20% males. These part time roles are mostly 10 hours per week. The majority of men are looking for fulltime or close to fulltime positions. I have organised a contract for two of these part time people so that they are also employed to serve in another ministry - this enables them to 'survive' on the small church income (total 20 hours paid + additional hours volunteering).
In the Children's Ministry team overall however I have 50% males serving. These are volunteer positions. And includes young leaders and grown ups.
The trick is to have them serve where they feel of most use - a good fit in job description. But this also applies to our female leaders :)
For us we have learned that there are about 40% of our volunteers in Children's Ministry are men. I would say that 4-5 years ago it was about 20% men. I believe men think that teaching kids is for women and they have not been exposed to the understanding that men can teach kids but it has never been viewed that way over the years. They also seem to be afraid to teach kids for some reason. We are just now making great strides in the last 10-15 years where more men are becoming Children's Pastors. As a result it is changing how men think and perceive Children's Ministry. For us special events is a great way to draw men into the ministry. I have men come to our Kids Camps and get them involved in VBS. These events give me the opportunity to share vision with them and to emphasize how important it is for a man to be in a child's life because by the time they are around 12 they have already made up there minds for the most part what they will choose to believe. Once they hear that and see how the boys respond to them they are hooked. It also allows them to interact with other men who are teaching on Sunday's who share what takes place and they build relationships with the guys so they feel like part of the team and not on some remote island.