Volunteer Connection 
Safe Sanctuaries

God has called us to make our ministries safe, protecting our children, youth and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation. God has also called us to create communities of faith where children, youth and vulnerable adults can be safe and grow strong.

Jesus taught that, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me,” (Mark 9:37 NRSV) and “If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones…it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea.” (Matthew 18:6 NRSV).

The Social Principles of the United Methodist Church state that “…children must be protected from economic, physical, and sexual exploitation and abuse.” At each child’s baptism, we affirm our responsibility to their safety by our congregational response, pledging: “With God’s help, we will so order our lives after the example of Christ, that this child, surrounded by steadfast love, may be established in the faith, and confirmed and strengthened in the way that leads to life eternal.” (From The Book of Worship, Baptismal Covenant, Congregational Pledge II)

Building on these foundations, we recognize that our faith calls us to offer hospitality and protection to all children, youth and vulnerable adults, as well as those who are committed to ministering to them as volunteers and employees. Every 15 seconds, a child is abused or neglected. Often, abuse occurs in places where children and youth feel safe – homes, schools, camps, and even churches. In over three quarters of reported cases, the victim was related to or acquainted with the abuser. In light of this, the Kentucky Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church and MWUMChurch have seen fit to outline policy and procedures that can prevent such abuse from happening in our church so that our church can be a place where children can feel safe in disclosing abuse and so that our volunteers and employees that minister to our children, youth and vulnerable adults are protected. 

This policy sets forth the MANDATORY requirements in the areas of 

1) Screening

2) Supervision

3) Reporting

4) Response Plan. 

 
Everyone who volunteers with our children & youth ministry must be familiar with our Safe Sanctuary Policy and have a signed copy on file annually.  This link provides you with our policy in a form that you can sign  online.
 
Everyone who volunteers with our children & youth ministry undergo Safe Sanctuary Training once every 3 years. We offer this training on site at least once per year.  This link takes you to the website of the Kentucky Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church online Safe Sanctuary Training.  You make complete this training online and, after completing the test, turn in the certificate of completion..
 
Everyone who volunteers with our children & youth ministry undergo background check once every 3 years. MWUMChurch finds this procedure so important that we cover the cost.   This link takes you to the form that must be completed in order for this background check to be processed.
If you are unsure whether or not your Safe Sanctuary status is current please contact us.