VBS enlistment is in full swing. If your church is like mine, many of the people tapped to participate in VBS are not involved in children's ministry at other times during the year. So it's quite likely that your church does not have a background check on file for every person who has signed up to help in VBS. It is in your church's best interest to run a background check on everyone who works with minors (under 18)—from the bus driver to the snack lady and everyone in between. Most checks turn up only small incidents, such as speeding tickets, but others reveal more concerning information.
The Volunteers for Children Act of 1998 opens the door for a church to be sued if an incident occurs with an employee OR a volunteer and the church failed to conduct a national search to check for a previous criminal record. And what's even scarier is that all it takes is an accusation to seriously damage your church's testimony and credibility. Conducting background checks and training for all children's ministry volunteers (and staff) will help to safeguard your ministry and the children in your care. It's just good practice. Plus, many insurance carriers now require it. Check to see what your insurance carrier requires and how often background checks need to be repeated.
Don’t let safety slip your mind as you prepare for a great week of VBS. With background checks, not only will you rest assured that your volunteers and teachers have been screened, but you will also show parents that you have done your due diligence to help ensure the safety and security of their children.
LifeWay has partnered with backgroundchecks.com to make background checks more affordable for churches. Churches using LifeWay VBS can take advantage of FREE registration through May 31st. Click here for more information. Make sure your VBS is safe. Register today!