Faith child abuse seminar set for Island

SOUTH PADRE ISLAND — The issues are endless.

But they are the issues which the Third Annual Faith Summit Child Abuse Prevention Seminar will address next month.

“What makes the faith summit unique is that we’re going to help churches learn how to make their church safer,” said Janet Johnson Magee, founder of Blue Sunday Child Abuse Prevention Initiative.

Blue Sunday is one of several sponsors of the Nov. 10 Faith Summit on South Padre Island which will offer speakers and resources to help churches join in the battle against child abuse and neglect. Anyone who works with children in the faith community is invited to attend, Magee said.

“We’re going to give them information on ways they can keep their own children safer,” Magee said. “Then they’re going to learn how to work alongside different agencies for the purpose of helping abused children in broken families heal.”

Magee said those attending the seminar will be given information on how to improve church policies regarding children.

“In those policies will be certain requirements they will make of people who want to volunteer,” Magee said.

More specifically, those policies will outline what kinds of behaviors are acceptable on church property and at church functions.

“One example is what we call our buddy system,” Magee said. “No single adult is left alone with children, not even a group of children, so they can hold each other accountable. If there is some misunderstanding you’ve got two adults in the room. Its’ a good safety plan.”

Another tool is a program to do background screenings for those wishing to volunteer.

“We want to equip the church to be as safe an environment as God intended the church to be,” she said.

Children must not fear reactions to their outcries for help. All allegations must be reported and there are services available to assist children through the process.

IF YOU GO

WHAT: Third Annual Faith Summit Child Abuse Prevention Seminar

WHEN: Nov. 10, 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.

WHERE: Isla Grande Beach Resort, 500 Padre Blvd., South Padre Island

FEE: Free of charge.

REGISTER AT THIS LINK: www.faithsummit.works