Tips to Help You Plan a Safe and Successful Vacation Bible School
It’s summer and for many churches, the doors will be open for hundreds of kids to attend Vacation Bible School (VBS).
VBS is a vital ministry and a great way for your congregation to connect with families in the community. But hosting kids of all ages is not easy; it takes a
great group of volunteers to make things run smoothly. And you’ll want to have several safety precautions in place to protect the children who attend.
To help you during VBS season, we’ve listed a few things you should keep in mind so kids are safe at your church.
Background Checks & Training for Volunteers
The cornerstone for VBS programs is support from volunteers. And more often than not, you’re probably short-staffed and looking for any help you can find.
But it’s essential to perform background checks on all adults assisting with your Vacation Bible School. You need to know who’s volunteering to protect the children and your church.
Ensure your volunteers are trained to work with kids and address emergencies. Have at least one volunteer (dependent on the size of your church) trained in first aid.
If you don’t have access to training, we highly recommend the first aid course from
CongregationU. Courses are completed online and Southern Mutual Church Insurance policyholders receive 20% off. In addition to first aid training, they have many
other learning opportunities like volunteer management, which could be very helpful to whoever is leading your VBS.
Safety Measures for Kids
Child safety is your number one priority during Vacation Bible School.
Parents should feel safe leaving their kids in your care. It starts with an efficient check-in and check-out process. Make sure you capture all
relevant information from parents, including emergency contacts, allergies, or any other needs a child may have. If possible, review allergies before you order snacks or other prepared foods.
When planning volunteer distribution, be careful to maintain proper student/teacher ratios and be mindful of age and gender. And always make sure to eliminate
one child-one adult interactions for all children and youth. The Child Protection information on our
website is a valuable resource to assist you in this important area.
Make Sure Facility is Ready
Hosting VBS is also a good time to review your church property and look for potential hazards. Kids will likely be running
throughout your church grounds, so identifying any risks can keep children safe once VBS is in full swing.
Inspect playground equipment to ensure it’s safe for lots of use. And walk throughout your church, checking doors and access points that aren’t safe for kids and lock them if needed.
We’re here for all of our churches during VBS and beyond. If you have questions about your policy or need our support during Vacation Bible School, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.