Providing a safe, loving environment for children to learn about Jesus is one of the highest callings and privileges of the church. After all, kids are the next generation of church leaders, teachers, and volunteers. Their safety is a top priority.
In Matthew 19:13-15 when people brought their children to Jesus, he said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (NIV). Jesus showed compassion and openness to the children in front of him. He encouraged them to come to him and blessed them. We are called to follow Jesus’ example: to protect, love, and show compassion to children.
In today’s mobile world intentionally using the right technology in ministry helps build trust with families while protecting and nurturing the next generation of the church. We’ve compiled three simple steps that can help increase the security and safety of your children and youth ministries.
Simple and Safe Check In
Whether they’re showing up to service 30 minutes early or are rushing kids out of the minivan five minutes late, parents need an efficient and safe system to check their kids in. With the pre-check feature of Pushpay’s church app, parents are able to check their children into their respective classes right from their phone, and scan a barcode at the door to eliminate the need for re-entering the same information each week. They control what information the system has about their children and can update it at any time right from the app.
When the kids are checked in, a name tag is automated with all the information needed to improve their safety, including:
- room or class number
- specific health instructions and more
so that any important information is known to all adult volunteers.
And when class is over, parents can breathe easy, knowing that your volunteers will record when each kid was picked up and by whom, ensuring that children are only collected by adults the parents designate through the app.
Build Confidence with Background Checks
When kids are in Sunday School or participating in a church activity, their families trust your ministry to appropriately care for, teach, and protect them. Your church technology should fully integrate with a comprehensive background check system that frequently updates your volunteer and staff records so that parents and guardians have greater peace of mind when their children are in your care.
Pushpay has been blessed with some amazing integration partners who are committed to protecting children while they learn in church. MinistrySafe, Secure Search, and Checkr are just some of the solutions that seamlessly integrate with Pushpay’s ChMS so that you can easily run and update background checks on volunteers and staff as you strive to provide the highest level of safety for the next generation.
These background check solutions can also alert leaders and staff to volunteers who still need a background check before they’re scheduled to serve. These alerts protect your church—and more importantly, the children in your care.
Keep Communication Open
Everyone dreads the church beeper system that publicly shows a child needs their parent and guardian—or worse, the teacher physically coming into service to grab an adult. Thankfully this communication system can now be a thing of the past.
Pushpay offers multiple, discreet communication options for caregivers to receive real time updates on their children, such as Text Message Paging. Your volunteers or staff can easily look up the child’s name in the system, select the communication format, edit the text to inform their parent or guardian of the situation, and send the one-way message instantly.
If an adult chooses not to use the Text Message Paging system, your team has other options to communicate. Pushpay’s app generates reports, including the Room Roster report, which displays the name and mobile number of the Primary Contact and Spouse of the child who was checked in. With that report, you can directly get in contact with a parent.
And if parent’s phones are silenced during church service, you can use the church’s projection system to get their attention by showing their child’s specific security code on screen during the service.
By showing the child’s code instead of their name, families are notified and their privacy is protected. Your church tech should ensure that your volunteers and staff can more efficiently contact a guardian whenever a child is in need of help or special attention.
Encourage Trust With Your Tech
As a parent, there’s no better feeling than knowing that your child is safe. The Church is responsible for faithfully serving, equipping, and protecting children and families in their community.
By adding extra safety practices to your children’s ministry with church tech, you can put parents’ minds at ease, and strengthen your relationship with them, helping keep them engaged for years to come.
Are there gaps in your safety and security practices? Need to brush up on the essentials when it comes to children’s ministry safety? We encourage you to watch our recent webinar with Checkr, Safety Best Practices to Consider for your Children’s Ministry, to learn from experts in youth ministry and child safety about best practices.
Together we can help you know, grow, and keep your community.