As a church we work with many vulnerable people and it is important that we treat them appropriately with kindness and Gospel-shaped grace. It is of course important that everyone is treated in this way, but the vulnerable can easily be forgotten or hurt.
One of the most vulnerable groups in our midst are children. They are often powerless and usually at the mercy of the adults who are given responsibility to care for them.
In recognition of this, the Anglican Church now requires all people involved with caring for and ministering to children and vulnerable people (eg. Jesus Club or Red Tree) to do two things.
First, all people involved in caring for and ministering to children must do the Anglican Church approved Safe Ministry Training. Many professions require you to do Safe Working with Children programs however, such programs cannot be accredited to replace the Anglican Church Safe Ministry Training. Once completed, a refresher is completed every three years. The upcoming date for the full course training is 3rd July. If you are unsure as to whether you should do the training or where you are up to in the three year cycle, please come and do it again. If you are not Safe Ministry Trained, you will not be able to continue with your ministry to children or vulnerable persons in Term 3, 2016. Register in the office.
Second, all people involved in caring for and ministering to children and the vulnerable must apply for a Working With Children Check (WWCC). You start this process by going to www.kidsguardian.nsw.gov.au. You make an application and they send you a temporary WWCC number. You must then go to the RMS and identify yourself again after which the check takes place and clearance (or otherwise) is provided. You must then provide the office with your WWCC number and date of birth for verification. If you do not have a WWCC that has been verified by our office you will not be able to minister to children.
There are some very limited exceptions to both of the above arrangements and if you wish to discuss those, please speak to me or our Safe Ministry Representative, Kerry Olsen.
It is actually our preference that everyone in our church does both the Safe Ministry Training and acquires a WWCC. This not only creates a helpful culture of transparency but also a culture of understanding. The more eyes that both see and understand, the better. If you have any questions about this, please speak to me or one of the Wardens.