The Healthy Church Hub

Are the children in your church safe?

The unfortunate reality is even within your church walls, countless threats exist that could potentially endanger the children in your care.

While there’s no way to 100% guarantee safety, there are procedures, plans, and strategies you can put in place to help protect children.

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and to help do our part, we wanted to share 5 straightforward ways your church can improve children’s safety.

Not only will these steps help to keep children safe, but they will reflect your ministry’s desire to value, build up, and point even the littlest members of your congregation to the Lord.

1. Conduct Thorough Background Checks

If your church isn’t already conducting background checks for all staff members and volunteers, it’s a great place to start. This is often the first step in preventing predators and violent offenders from working with children in your church. 

Background checks:

  • Help to scare off predators before they even enter your ministry
  • Offer peace of mind to parents
  • Have evolved to be even more thorough and effective
  • Are surprisingly affordable
  • Protect churches against negligent hiring

However, not all background checks are created equal. 

TRY THIS: Protect My Ministry is the leading church background screening CRA in the industry. Learn more about their background checks and training resources here.

2. Create and Implement a Communications Strategy

When it comes to safety, it’s critical to not only have a plan but to make sure that plan is communicated both internally and externally. 


Start by creating a safety plan with key members of your staff. This should include details like what to do and who should respond in case of a safety incident.

Having an internal communications strategy also helps make sure everyone understands and prioritizes safety concerns and keeps in contact so the right people can respond quickly if and when needed.

TRY THIS: Create docs and forms detailing your internal safety communications strategy. Then, share these forms with all staff members and volunteers so they are readily accessible when needed.


It’s important your members and guests alike feel protected and confident in your safety procedures each time they walk through the doors of your church. Consider including safety information in your regular communications like emails, bulletins, and guest welcome centers.

This will help people not only know what’s expected but also feel like they know what’s going on. 

Keep in mind while every person doesn’t need to know everything, it’s wise to be proactive when it comes to safety instead of reactive. 

3. Establish Clear Policies

Next, to improve children’s safety at your church, establish clear policies now, before they’re needed.

These policies could include things like:

  • Age requirements for working with children
  • Background checks
  • The ratio of teachers to students
  • Check-in and out procedures
  • The presence of security guards
  • Door locks and access to key fobs
  • Details and restrictions for travel
  • Emergency protocols

While this list isn’t exhaustive, hopefully, it gives you an idea of policies to discuss and establish. These policies will help protect both children and church leaders.

4. Have a Child Check-In/Check-Out System in Place

No matter the size of your church, it’s no secret that children’s check-in and check-out times tend to get a little chaotic. This is why it’s crucial to have an easy-to-use streamlined system in place. 

An effective check-in and check-out system helps to verify every child is where they’re supposed to be, volunteers know who they’re responsible for, and the right child goes home with the right person at the end of the day.

Plus, it makes attendance record-keeping a breeze!

Like with background checks, not all check-in systems have the same features. 

TRY THIS: With Ministry Brands Amplify, parents can use the mobile app to check in their children on the way to church. Then, upon arrival, they can quickly scan their phone to print badges at a kiosk. It’s simple and secure!

5. Offer Ongoing Safety Training

Lastly, to keep children safe at your church, offering ongoing safety training to all staff members and volunteers is important.

These trainings should not only cover your church’s policies, procedures, and communication strategies, but should also equip adults to know how to handle potentially dangerous situations. 

For example, can your volunteers answer these questions?

  • When (if ever) should you accompany a child to the restroom?
  • What are the signs of sexual grooming?
  • Is it appropriate to hug a child? Touch their shoulder? Carry them?
  • What should you do if you hear someone discussing an inappropriate topic with a child?
  • Where do you take children in case of a fire? Tornado? Active shooter?

These are just a few of the topics/questions your safety trainings can answer.

TRY THIS: Protect My Ministry offers free instructional videos your volunteers can access now.

Next Steps

Improving children’s safety at your church is just one of the ways you can fulfill your calling and minister to the most vulnerable of those in your care. And with this month being Child Abuse Prevention Month, it’s the perfect time to get started. 

Start small and know solutions exist to help you fill in the safety gaps at your church. Explore how Ministry Brand Amplify can help and start your free trial or schedule your demo here.