Although churches and faith-based organizations are places where children and youth should be the safest, they are often targeted by child molesters since they are places where there are large numbers of potential victims. In addition, church camps often cover larger areas where the opportunities for there to be one-on-one contact between camp workers and children or youth are increased. Additionally, camps often involve overnight stays which also can open up the potential for improper contact between camp workers and children or improper contact between youth campers exists. This is why churches and faith-based organizations should take extra precautions including making sure that all workers and volunteers with access to or contact with children or youth have gone through some type of child abuse awareness training and prevention program.

The TrainRight program is certified by the Texas Department of Health and Human Services for youth camps and can be used by churches and faith-based organizations as a general training and certification program.

The Texas Annual Conference of United Methodist Churches has chosen the TrainRight program as the required training program for its Conference members for any staff or volunteers who will access to or contact with children or youth at any Conference or District sponsored event or activity. A copy of the Conference's Policy Addendum requiring this training is attached below as well as a link to the Conference website where a copy of the Safe Sanctuary Policy (which is required reading for applicable staff and volunteers) can be viewed. In addition, TrainRight can provide a sample "Safe Child" policy to churches and faith-based clients who use TrainRight's program.

TrainRight's Child Abuse Awareness, Prevention & Certification Program covers four important areas

  1. The definitions of Physical Child Abuse, Emotional Child Abuse, and Neglect, and Sexual Child Abuse;
  2. The physical and behavioral signs that can indicate the potential presence of child abuse;
  3. The methods that sexual child abusers use to gain access to their victims; and
  4. The rules and methods that can be used to help protect children and youth and prevent the occurrence of child abuse in your organization

Remember, TrainRight also provides you with online reports and certificates providing proof of training and certification dates for purposes of monitoring compliance with either state requirements or your organization's own policies.

Texas Annual Conference of United Methodist Churches

Safe Sanctuary Policy Addendum