COVID-19 and Safety: This training addresses the unique vulnerability of children and youth during COVID-19 and what your church can do to prevent harm and support families during this challenging time. It also includes best practices and safety tips for Zoom and virtual kids' programming for churches.
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During this pandemic, children are at risk for online abuse, for suicidal ideation, and for mental health concerns. This fall is the time to prioritize this instruction for all ages. While we fully acknowledge that this curriculum cannot replace professional interventions, Circle of Grace is a wonderful reminder to children that God loves their entire selves and wants them to be safe—and that their Sunday school teachers and adults at their church care about their whole lives too!
To ensure that your online Sunday school classes and other activities using Zoom go as smoothly as possible, try to follow these guidelines ... Show your love for children by positioning your device so the webcam is at the same level as your eyes. They don’t want to look up your nose or down on top of your head!
In this season, where COVID-19 compels congregations to gather virtually, many adults are wondering what that looks like for youth ministry. What boundaries are appropriate? The Yale Youth Ministry Institute has compiled these recommendations for your consideration as you develop your own policy of church safety practices for virtual gatherings.
In March, as houses of worship were responding to the COVID-19 outbreak, my congregation scrambled to discover ways to worship without gathering in person. We hoped that the entire worshipping community would experience a smooth transition from worship in the sanctuary to worship at home. For adults, we trust that worship will feel right through the familiar weave of music, prayer, scripture, and sermon. But for children?
Bring a Dove's Nest speaker to your faith community—virtually! In this time when so many churches are meeting online, Dove's Nest is excited to be able to offer a new sermon / short training resource. Creating Safety for Children and Vulnerable Adults provides tips on how to make our churches safe spaces, including information about caring for each other during the COVID-19 pandemic and resources available to aid in prevention efforts and help support survivors. Read more.
11 Ways to Keep Children and Youth Safe While They’re at Home
Children and youth need protection now more than ever. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to school closures, economic stress, and unmet childcare needs, leaving many parents in a lurch. It’s not surprising that child abuse, neglect, and domestic violence are predicted to increase ... Read more.
RESOURCES FOR CHURCH LEADERS:
- Brotherhood Mututal: COVID+ and your Ministry: Tracking and Tracing
- CDC Considerations for Communities of Faith
- Mennonite Church USA: Staying Healthy and Hopeful
- Church Safety Best Practices For Working with Youth During Pandemic
- Guide to Taking Youth Ministry Online
- Vacation Bible School resource: Faith at Home
RESOURCES FOR PARENTS/CAREGIVERS:
- Amy Lynn Smith, Dove's Nest Speaker Bureau Member: Child Safety During COVID-19 Crisis
- American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children: COVID-19 Resources
- CASA & Prevent Child Abuse Arizona: Tips to Engaged Children in Video Calling
- Circle of Grace curriculum: Contact Kathy [at] dovesnest.net for new Circle of Grace material designed for home use for licensed organizations' families during this time of social distancing.
- Common Sense Media: Mental Health for Kids
- Darkness to Light: Safe Online Learning blog and 30-min Online Training: Protecting Children During a Crisis
- Darkness to Light: Reopening—Summer Camp Safety
- ECPAT-USA: Online Safety Guides for Youth And Parents and Educators
- Essayontime: The Best Online Resources for COVID Quarantine and Isolation Period
- The Mennonite: 10 Ways to Keep Kids Safe with Virtual Learning
- MCC: Living Creatively and Joyfully with Children (Even Indoors)
- Safe Church Ministry: Are You (And Your Church) Safe and Secure Online?
- Stop It Now: COVID-19 Resources for Parents and Caregivers to Help Keep Children Safe
- Stop It Now: Safety in COVID-19 Times Video 1
- The American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children: COVID-19 Resources
- Video Neighbors: A series of videos for children in the style of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, particularly in the time of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Zero to Three: Tips for Families
- Aha! Parenting Blog: Practical Solutions for Real Parenting Problems; Managing Screentime During the Pandemic
- Psychology Today: Sheltering with a Teen
- UNICEF's Tips for Parenting during the COVID-19 Outbreak: Ideas to Help Parents and Caregivers Do the Most Important Job in the World
- Washington Post: Expert Advice for Sheltering with a Toddler
- Zero to Three: Tips for Families: Coronavirus
COVID-19 RESOURCES FOR CHILDREN:
- Child-Friendly Virus Explanation PDF
- A Kid's Book About, Inc.: A Kids Book about COVID-19 (age 4 and up)
- Nosy Crow: Coronavirus: A Book for Children
COVID-19 AND FAITH FOR CHILDREN & YOUTH:
- Central Plains Mennonite Conference: Resources for Families
- Mennonite Early Childhood Network: Making Faith Sense in Strange Times
- Small Tall Music: Singalongs on Facebook
- SHINE Curriculum: At Home Resources for Parents and SHINE Connect for Online Faith Formation
- Sunday school video from Peace Mennonite Church
- Tech Tips for Zooming with Kids from Dan Schrock and Dove’s Nest