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30 June, 2017

Safety Management Online™ is an important online tool which is available to Churches to help manage people and programs involving Children, provided by ChildSafe Limited. You can login to the site at the link below.

In 2014, the State Board of Churches of Christ in SA & NT established a new Child Safe Work Group to provide resources and practical support for congregations as they work to ensure their ministry with children is conducted in the safest and healthiest environment possible. Many Churches of Christ in SA are already using the ChildSafe™ program, and the Child Safe Work Group is actively seeking to expand that number.

The Child Safe Work Group currently consists of; Valerie Gordge from Blair Athol [Chair], Rachael Morey from Hewett [ChildSafe Liaison Officer], Mark Zerna from Elizabeth, James Bowden from Blackwood [State Youth Minister], and Greg Elsdon [State Minister].

What Are Our Objectives?

• We want our churches to be communities in which children feel at home and in which they flourish.

• We want our churches to be communities in which children are valued and respected.

• We want our churches to be communities in which leaders set the tone for attitudes, policies and practices that foster respect and safety.

• We want our churches to be communities at the forefront of shaping environments and activities that are kid-friendly and child safe.

• We want our churches to be communities in which all adults accept and share the responsibility and privilege of respecting and caring for children.

• We want our churches to be communities in which any accusation or rumour of abusive or inappropriate behaviour towards children is taken seriously and responded to promptly, compassionately, justly and transparently.

Sadly, our churches have not always been safe places for children, or places in which children have flourished.

ChildSafe™ is not just about sexual abuse or exploitation. It’s also about:

• Not placing children in situations that may cause them to feel pressured or anxious.

• Not allowing children to participate in activities when there is risk of injury, coercion or social isolation.

• Building solid ‘risk management’ practices into all children’s activities, programs and facilities.

The long-term damage done to children who are abused or mistreated by adults is widely acknowledged. So too, is the harm that occurs when these children are re-abused by ‘authorities’ who fail to act appropriately, or collude to protect the reputation of their organisations.

ChildSafe™ is a widely used program that assists churches to take responsibility for ensuring they are communities in which children are safe, and in which they can flourish. It refers to a specific program of safety management for those working with children and young people.

Child Safe is the term used to refer more broadly to a commitment to the safety and risk management.

Where Can I Get Further Information?

The attached file offers a policy template. If you would like the editable version, send us an email inquiry to request our latest Childsafe policy and procedures document or any other information. Check our events section for the latest Childsafe training event near you.