Families

As the lockdown season in the UK has drawn to a close we have purposefully decided not to re-start an official children’s programme during our Sunday morning gatherings. We know that this is unusual but we are exploring new ways of ‘being’ as a church. As a church and as parents we want our children and young people to be part of everything we do; this includes our new interactive Bible Study Cafe weeks, and our monthly Ascend worship evenings.

How can children be involved?

In practice this means that children will stay in with the adults during the meetings which will typically last around 90 minutes. Find out more about our new monthly programme here. We encourage our children and young people to participate in worship, to read aloud from the Bible, to lead in prayer and share testimonies if they wish to.

During our Bible Study Cafe weeks, the children have the opportunity to sit at their own table (supervised by an adult) or with their families. We provide colouring and activity sheets each week, along with pens and pencils, if children would like to use these. We also provide a small selection of toys and books for parents to use with young ones during the meeting if they would like to. The youth can also sit together and participate in the discussion at their own table, or with their families if they prefer. Please feel free to contact us if you have any other specific questions.

 

Safeguarding and wellbeing

We take the safety and well-being of children seriously. We have a dedicated Safeguarding Coordinator (and deputy) who has undertaken relevant training in safeguarding children and safer recruitment through: Kent County Council, NSPCC, and the Churches Child Protection Agency (CCPAS). Our Trustees review our safeguarding procedures annually, and our children's volunteers have undertaken the necessary DBS checks.

Registration for events

At times we may run specific events for children. When this happens we ask parents/carers to complete a registration form, including medical information and parental/carer emergency contact details, for all children attending our children's events. The form is available here or on the Contact section of this site.

Inclusion Statement

When we run child-focused events:

"We recognise that children come from a variety of social, ethnic and economic backgrounds. We want our programmes to be sensitive to these differences and not create unnecessary barriers to their full participation. The majority of children attending on a Sunday do so with a parent/carer who is a member of the church, but we recognise that sometimes children will attend with their friends and may not be familiar with church or the Christian faith. 

1. Children will not be required to do anything against their will or to participate in anything they don’t feel comfortable with. If children whose families don't identify as Christian ask questions about the faith, we will endeavour to answer these clearly with reference to what the Bible teachers, but without making them feel pressured to agree with this. 

2. We will be sensitive to new children visiting for the first time and will make every effort to make them feel welcome. 

3. When asking the children to volunteer for particular tasks, leaders will be fair and not have "favourites".

4. Our behaviour policy will be applied fairly to all children."