Safe Church Awareness Training
Who needs to complete 'Safer Churches' training?
'Safer Churches' training is designed for all members who serve on local Church Board members as well as leaders/coordinators who hold child or youth-related positions acoss Austalia and New Zealand.
Currently, a 'Refresher' workshop of 2.5 hours duration is recommended every 3-years. Safe Place Services are exploring the option of making the 'Refresher' training available online in mid-2015.
What is covered in the 'Safer Churches' training?
The face to face training uses a mix of interactive presentations, video vignettes, and small group discussions to cover 4 modules.
The 4 modules are:
- Foundations of Safe Places
- Protecting Vulnerable People
- Safe Leaders
- Safe Programs
It takes approximately 5-6 contct hours to complete.
The online training uses videos, exercises and written (or spoken if preferred) content and consists of 6 modules online and 1 webinar. It is available anywhere there is internet connectivity and a computer or handheld device.
This training is available at elearning.safeplaceservices.org.au
This takes approximately 5 hours to complete and learners have up to 6 weeks from when they start to complete the training.
Is this just an 'Adventist' requirement?
No. All organizations that work with children and young people are expected to train their staff and volunteers as part of their duty of care. The local Church is no different.
The 'Safer Churches' training adheres to an inter-denominational template overseen by the 'Safe Church Project', and initiative of the National Council of Churches in Australia. This training sets the 'benchmark' that most major denominations and faith groups throughout Australia have elected to follow.
The 'Safe Church Project' grew out of consultation between 'heads' of Churches that work in the area of abuse who convened in Canberra in 2003. Safe Place Services, representing the Adventist Church in Australia, took part in that first consultation and continues to be an active and supportive partner in the project.
The 'Safe Church Training Project' has been described as "ecumenicalism in action", and recognizes the commonality of abuse issues that are faced by all religious organizations and the significant challenge that training staff and volunteers across the Nation poses.
Who can deliver 'Safer Churches' training?
'Safer Churches' training should be run by 'recognized' facilitators. These facilitators have appropriate prior learning/skills and have completed a e-day facilitators workshop run by the 'Safe Church Project'. 'Recognized' facilitators are also required to observe and co-facilitate a certain number of workshops with existing 'recognised' trainers before they are offically 'recognized' as trainers.
There are 'recognized' Adventist trainers in North NSW, Greater Sydney, Victorian and the South Australian Conferences. In time more 'recognized' trainers in the Adventist Church will come on board. A goal of Safe Place Services is for a pool of 'recognized' trainers to be created in each Conference who can conduct training for various regions throughout each Conference.
In addition to Adventist trainers, all Safe Church Partner-organizations recognize the training provided by other partners (such as Baptist, Uniting Church, Salvation Army, Anglican, and Australian Christian Churches).
WORKSHOP FEEDBACK / EVALUATION
If you have recently completed a Safe Church Awareness Training workshop, you can complete the evaluation form online here (the link will open in a new page)