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Back to School and Background Checks: Why Screening Church Volunteers is Important

back to school church volunteers

Volunteers help the church flourish. They’re a crucial part of ministry life. Most churches wouldn’t be able to function without the help of volunteers. And as the back-to-school season approaches, it’s important to ensure all your church’s volunteers have completed (and passed) a background check.

By default, church members and visitors usually feel comfortable leaving their children in the hands of children’s ministry staff and volunteers. Church is supposed to be a safe place. There’s an assumption that churches are filled with people who love children and can be trusted. Yet, in any place where there is a group of people gathered, there is always a risk of unwanted incidents that could harm the children entrusted to staff and volunteers.

Fall is always a busy season for churches because families are getting back into a routine. Thus, they are usually consistently attending church again too. Below you’ll discover the importance of background checks for volunteers as kids head back to school and back to church.

Screen all new volunteers.

With the busy back-to-school season, you’ll want to recruit more volunteers. This will make sure there are enough people serving as new churchgoers arrive. In addition to reaching out to more people to volunteer, you’ll need to do an initial background screen. For every new individual who signs up to volunteer, whether they’re in children’s ministry, on the welcome team, or anywhere in between, doing an initial background screen is important for safety.

Perform a rescreen of current church volunteers.

Be sure to set reminders to perform rescreens on all current volunteers. Many churches conduct an initial background check but often leave it at that. But how can they guarantee that a volunteer hasn’t committed a crime after they started volunteering? That’s why it’s crucial to rescreen volunteers consistently.

Pro tip: Continuous Monitoring can help churches identify problematic behavior between the initial background check and a person’s regular rescreen.


Background checks give confidence to parents.

Background checks create a feeling of trust among parents and churchgoers. You should be able to trust that the people around your children (and your church) are safe and trustworthy.

Parents will feel more comfortable knowing that the people who teach their children about Jesus were not convicted of any crimes before being hired by the church. When parents know that volunteers have been screened appropriately, they’ll feel more confident in leaving their kids in their care.

Background screening helps deter criminals and sexual predators.

Running background checks before school starts can help deter criminals and sexual predators. If a criminal understands that they’ll have to undergo a background screen,  they will be less likely to attempt to volunteer. This helps weed out potentially dangerous people before they even begin serving.

Complete background checks before the school year starts.

With back-to-school busyness, it may be tempting to skip background screenings for your volunteers. However, it is one of the most crucial times to complete them. You’ll want to have plenty of time before all the families return to church to make sure volunteers have passed their screenings. Ensure a safer environment for the kids and provide reassurance for the parents.

Pro Tip: Use the free eBook, Background Check Blueprint, to guide your church in the setup and review of your staff and volunteer screening program.

They help keep kids safe.

Background checks add another layer of security to keep kids safe. Not allowing potential criminals and sex offenders around the children in your church is critical. Completing background checks and rescreens ahead of time protects kids from harmful people.

Background checks provide a safer environment.
A lot of people assume people serving in church are going to be “good people.” However, some criminals may take advantage of the larger gatherings of individuals, families, and children. A background check can help identify potentially violent perpetrators or people who are convicted of theft or embezzlement. Of course, keeping people safe is a top priority. But it’s also important to provide a safe environment. Back-to-school background checks on church volunteers can help do this.


Protect your ministry today!

If your church is looking to provide a safe environment for students and their families, then you should consider doing background checks on all adults who will be interacting with kids. A background check is a quick and easy way to ensure that the adults at your church have not committed any crimes or have any other questionable activities in their past. Protect My Ministry is here to support you with all of your church safety needs. Connect with us today to get started!


Download your FREE eBook: Background Check Blueprint