Safe Church Grooming Awareness Workshop

On 18 August Uniting Mission and Education and Uniting Resources are holding a Safe Church Grooming Awareness Workshop.

The workshop will be focussing on the topic of grooming.

Grooming refers to behaviours of those in trusted positions who exert power and influence and may gain the trust of potential child victims, their parents and caregivers and even their communities by methodically grooming them. 

"In this workshop we will be focussing on a topic that we perhaps don’t want to admit but can’t ignore," says Nicole Rose, Head of Risk, Safety and Compliance for Uniting Resources. "As a parent myself, nothing is more important than making sure children and families are safe. And it is also paramount that we are vigilant in our Church environments."

“The ‘groomer’ is often an individual known to the family; they may be acquaintances, influential members of the community, trusted friends and even family members," states Nicole.

"I would hope that our inner wisdom tells us that we must never sit on the sidelines and watch from a safe distance, perhaps hoping that someone else will intervene in situations we know are wrong, abusive and harmful" explains Nicole. "There is actually a name for this — the ‘bystander effect’ — defined as the presence of others discouraging an individual from intervening. At the workshop we will be examining some of the psychology behind the 'bystander effect' and look at what behaviours can exascerbate and circumvent this."

About the workshop

There will be a number of presenters proving their insights at this important workshop.

Speaker and trainer, Andrea Musulin, who worked in the Police for 30 years will also be presenting at the workshop. During this time she has gained extensive experience responding to sexually and physically abused children and who spent a large part of her career developing crime prevention programs designed to protect children and empower children to disclose abuse. Andrea is currently the ambassador of WA’s leading child protection education and training organisation and has written several resources that are now used by the Department of Education and other schools across Australia and internationally in combating child sexual abuse.

“This workshop is for everyone across the Synod who works with children or vulnerable people, who is a leader in a Congregation or is an office bearer in a Presbytery,” says Nicole of the importance of the workshop for congregations. “For those who can attend in person, I would encourage you to come along, give your perspective and hear some amazing experts.”

For those not able to make the workshop, the sessions will be filmed and the training made available online after the event with details on how to use this training. This online resource will also be invaluable for people to attend the event to be able to review afterwards and digest the information further.

This is not a one-off event. Synod will be holding more of these workshops and also continuing the conversation throughout Congregations and Presbyteries.

For anyone who wants to discuss any topic and is interested in the material but not able to make the workshop but would like to access the online training please contact Nicole Rose — Head of Risk, Safety and Compliance — directly, via her email,  nicoler@nswact.uca.org.au.

Save the date and register now!

Download the flyer for more information

Register now, its free!

Go to the event website.