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BEST CHURCH PRACTICES

Volunteer Applications
TABLE OF CONTENTS....................................................................PAGE Lea er!s Gui e.......................................................................................2
Essentials o" a Volunteer Application..............................................34 Application Ele#ents You may customize a volunteer application to suit your ministry needs. Simply choose the elements below that youd like to include and print the pages you need. Basic Volunteer Application.............................................................5 Application to $or% &it' C'il ren()out'.....................................67 For t'e Volunteer Coor inator Re"erence C'ec% Inter*ie& For#......................................................8 Sa"et+ Policies an Letters O*er*ie& o" Volunteer Application Process...............................910 A itional Resources..........................................................................,,

From www.BuildingChurchLeader .com ! 2005 Chri "iani"# $oda# %n"l

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Lea er!s Gui e

Lea er!s Gui e


How to use Volunteer Applications by !"#$%#&' (H")(H $*A%*)S
Welcome. Youve purchased an innovative resource that will help you create and administer an effective volunteer application. With a better application, youll be more likely to find the right people, and to help those people find the right positionall while carefully limiting your potential risk. Selected by editors at Christianity oday !nternational, these are the best components of numerous applications, which come from a variety of churches and denominations. We have assembled several components that can be included in an application form. You may use any component or form as it appears in this training packet, or alter and customi"e whats here to better serve your congregation. his free sample includes an overview of how to create applications that will help you place volunteers effectively, as well as protect your church from risk. Weve included a basic volunteer application form and a form for applicants who will be working with children. here is also a tool to help you conduct a thorough reference check, and there is a sample form that reviews the policies for volunteer applicants. #inally, weve included a list of additional resources for recruiting and training volunteers. he components of the complete pack cover a broad range of topics for employing volunteers in your church. #or access to an additional $% forms, including a volunteer driver application, a list of references, and interview &uestions, consider purchasing the full 'est Church (ractices) *+olunteer ,pplications- at www.'uildingChurch.eaders.com. /isclaimer) hese forms are solely for illustrative purposes. State and local laws may vary. !t is recommended that each church solicit the advice of an independent and &ualified attorney. Christianity oday !nternational does not assume any liability for reliance on these forms. 0eed more material, or something on a specific topic1 See our website at www.'uildingChurch.eaders.com. o contact the editors) 23mail 'C.4christianitytoday.com 5ail '6!./!07 C869C8 .2,/29S , Christianity oday !nternational :;< 7undersen /rive, Carol Stream, !. ;=$>>

From www.BuildingChurchLeader .com ! 2005 Chri "iani"# $oda# %n"l

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Essentials o" a Volunteer Application


+aking these steps could save your church ,rom disaster.
Although using an application form may seem like a lot of work, or overly formal, its essential. Choosing the wrong person for a volunteer position can cause lifelong trauma to a victim, emotionally and spiritually drain the congregation, ruin your churchs reputation in the community, and dominate the life of your leaders. A volunteer employment application can help you avoid these disasters. ,ny application your church adopts should include the following elements) A description of the position in writing. here are many ambiguous areas in volunteer work. !f a person makes the wrong decision, he or she could be putting the church at risk. ?utline clearly what is e@pected of the volunteer. Clear selection or rejection procedures in writing. !ts vital to be selective as you choose volunteers, but being selective may open the door to discrimination lawsuits. (ut your selection or reAection criteria in writing. Vital information so full criminal searches and social traces can be researched. ChurchWorkersScreening.com recommends that you do background checks on any person who works with minors. 5ost local police departments and state bureaus of investigation will run a criminal records check within the state for about B$=. (rivate nationwide screening companies will run interstate checks for appro@imately B<=. ?r contact a local daycare center and ask who handles its background checks. ,pplications should include)

date of birth Social Security 0umber a drivers license, since offenders often use pseudonyms a statement for the applicant to sign, certifying that information in the application is true and complete authori"ation for a full investigative report including criminal records, driving records, and information provided by credit bureaus ten years or more of previous addresses, including county names two or more references
'e sure to maintain confidentiality of all applications and records. 9estrict access to these files to only a few individuals who legitimately need the information. ,fter the application is completed, interview the candidate and contact every reference. !ts also wise to ask people to regularly attend your church for si@ months before volunteering. his gives you a chance to get to know them. #inally, limit second chances. ,s Christians we want to be merciful, but giving a person a second chance in his or her area of weakness can open a church to a negligent3selection claim. , Aury may see the second chance as gross negligence on the part of the church.
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Sources 9ichard 9. 8ammar, *Cnow Your 9ecruits,- .2,/29S8!( D?690,., Spring %===
'eth D. .ueders, *Safe at Church,- .2,/29S8!( D?690,., Summer, $EEF Dames #. Cobble, Dr., *Screening Childrens Workers,- .2,/29S8!( D?690,., Summer, %==% ChurchWorkerScreening.com, *Si@ Steps to Ceep Your 5inistry Safe- and *What !s 0egligent Selection1-

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Basic Volunteer Application


Please remember to sign and date your application. If you are under 1 years of age, a parent or guardian will also need to sign this application.

Legal 0ame!ast "irst #iddle Initial

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+lace o8 &m9lo#men":ari"al "a"u - 22222222222222 '9ou e; 0ame0ame1 3 o8 children wi"h age -

<o #ou ha=e a 9er onal rela"ion hi9 wi"h >e u Chri "? Brie8l# de cri@e-

<a"e o8 Ba9"i m- 22222222222 <a"e1 3 o8 /"her '9iri"ual :ile "one 19lea e eA9lain322222222222222222222222222222222222222222 (ow long ha=e #ou a""ended "hi church? 2222222222222 ,re #ou in a mall grou9?

Li " an# leader hi94=olun"eer eA9erience #ou ha=e had-

Li " an# "rainingB educa"ion or 9iri"ual gi8" "ha" ha=e ha9ed #ou-

Li " an# o"her church mini "rie in which #ou are in=ol=ed-

<o #ou ha=e an# 9h# ical di a@ili"ie or condi"ion "ha" migh" 9re=en" #ou 8rom cer"ain "#9e o8 ac"i=i"ie ?2222222222222 %8 #e B 9lea e de cri@e-

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Application to $or% &it' C'il ren ( )out'


$his application is to be completed in full by all church paid staff and all volunteers for any position involving the supervision, teaching, or custody of minors. Information will be treated as confidential and is needed to help us provide a safe environment for children and youth who participate in our programs and use our facilities.

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1Li " an# o"her name "ha" ha=e @een u edB including maiden or 9re=iou married name3

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<ri=er Licen e 0um@er'9ou e 0ame+hone- 1 3

<o #ou ha=e an# medical "raining or are #ou C+* cer"i8ied?

Positions %n which area would #ou li6e "o er=e? +lea e chec6 @elow.
0ur er# $oddler 3 $'en are +ou a*aila.le to ser*e/

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8-30 9-50 11-15


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From www.BuildingChurchLeader .com ! 2005 Chri "iani"# $oda# %n"l

Bac%0roun (ow long ha=e #ou @een a""ending "hi church? 222222 #ear 222222 mon"h
,re #ou a mem@er o8 "hi church?

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'ince when?

<o #ou ha=e a 9er onal rela"ion hi9 wi"h >e u Chri "?

Li " #our "o9 "hree 9iri"ual gi8" 1i8 #ou are no" aware o8 #our gi8" B 9lea e a 6 8or a '9iri"ual Ei8" %n=en"or#3Li " an# gi8" B "alen" B "rainingB 6ill or educa"ion "ha" ha=e 9re9ared #ou "o wor6 wi"h children<o #ou ha=e an# 9h# ical di a@ili"ie or condi"ion 9re=en"ing #ou 8rom 9er8orming cer"ain "#9e o8 ac"i=i"ie ?

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%8 #e B 9lea e eA9lain %8 #e B 9lea e eA9lain

(a=e #ou e=er @een con=ic"ed o8 a crime? (a=e #ou e=er @een accu edB arre "ed or con=ic"ed o8 child a@u eB neglec"B or a crime in=ol=ing ac"ual or a""em9"ed eAual mole "a"ion o8 a minor or o"her eAuall# rela"ed crime?

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<o #ou u e illegal drug ? (a=e #ou e=er @een ho 9i"aliFed or "rea"ed 8or alcohol or u@ "ance a@u e? ,re "here an# circum "ance in=ol=ing #our li8e "#le or #our @ac6ground "ha" would call in"o Gue "ion #our a@ili"# "o wor6 wi"h children?

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(a=e #ou had an# 9ain8ul eA9erience in #our li8e "ha" ha=e @e""er eGui99ed #ou or "ha" ma# hinder #ou 8rom a 9roduc"i=e mini "r# wi"h children?

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%8 oB would #ou li6e "o "al6 "o a 9a "or regarding "hi circum "ance?

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Re"erence C'ec% Inter*ie& For#


'eferences are re(uired for each applicant prior to their certification to work with children, youth, or vulnerable persons. $he information that you share will be held in strict confidence. ,99lican"; name*e8erence name-

*e8erence addre

%treet City %tate &ip

*e8erence 9hone and e7mail-

1. 5ha" i #our rela"ion hi9 "o "he a99lican"? 2. (ow long ha=e #ou 6nown "he a99lican"? 3. (ow well do #ou 6now "he a99lican"? 4. (ow would #ou de cri@e "he a99lican"? 5. 5ha" are ome wa# #ou;d li6e "o ee "hi 9er on grow or de=elo9?

6. (a=e #ou o@ er=ed "hi 9er on in a 8ru "ra"ing i"ua"ion? 5ha" ha99ened?

7. 5ha" would % no" 6now a@ou" "hi 9er on merel# 8rom reading an a99lica"ion or mee"ing one "ime? 8. (ow would #ou de cri@e "he a99lican"; a@ili"# "o rela"e "o childrenB #ou"hB or =ulnera@le 9er on ? 9. <o #ou 6now o8 an# charac"eri "ic "ha" would nega"i=el# a88ec" "he a99lican"; a@ili"# "o wor6 wi"h childrenB #ou"hB or =ulnera@le 9er on ? 10. <o #ou ha=e an# 6nowledge "ha" "he a99lican" ha e=er @een con=ic"ed o8 a crime? %8 oB 9lea e de cri@e.

11. 5ho el e would @e a@le "o gi=e me in igh" in"o "hi 9er on? 12. +lea e li " an# o"her commen" #ou would li6e "o ma6e-

'igna"ure

<a"e

5e a99recia"e #our "ime in an wering "he e Gue "ion a we "ri=e "o do e=er#"hing we can "o 9ro"ec" our childrenB #ou"hB and =ulnera@le 9er on . $han6 #ou.

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O*er*ie& o" Volunteer Application Process


Application $o 9ro"ec" =ulnera@le 9eo9le and "o @e 9ro"ec"ed 8rom lia@ili"#B "he church mu " "a6e rea ona@le ac"ion in creening and u9er=i ing "he =olun"eer in=ol=ed in an# wor6 wi"h childrenB #ou"hB or o"her =ulnera@le 9eo9le. $here8oreB e=er# 9ro 9ec"i=e mini "r# leaderHincluding e "a@li hed or long7"ime mem@er o8 "hi churchHmu " com9le"e "he =olun"eer a99lica"ion 8orm.
$he =olun"eer a99lica"ion 8orm i cri"ical in 9ro"ec"ing "he church 8rom legal ac"ion i8 a ca e or accu a"ion o8 a@u e occur in which a church =olun"eer i in=ol=ed. , cour" can 8ind "he church legall# lia@le i8 i" i le "han # "ema"ic and "here8ore negligen" in creening =olun"eer . B# ha=ing 9ro 9ec"i=e =olun"eer 8ill ou" a =olun"eer a99lica"ion 8ormB "he church grea"l# reduce "he 9o"en"ial 8or a@u e and "he re ul"an" lia@ili"#. $he 9a "or o8 a congrega"ion or ano"her de igna"ed leader will moni"or "he a99lica"ion 9roce and in8orma"ion in a ecure 8ile. and 6ee9 8orm

Inter*ie& $wo au"horiFed 9eo9le "hen in"er=iew each 9ro 9ec"i=e =olun"eer. $he in"er=iewer can a 6 8ollow7u9 Gue "ion and Gue "ion o8 clari8ica"ion. $he in8orma"ion gi=en in "he in"er=iew will @e a=aila@le onl# "o "he in"er=iewer and "he 9a "or or o"her de igna"ed leader. $he in"er=iew al o gi=e "he 9ro 9ec"i=e =olun"eer "he o99or"uni"# "o a 6 Gue "ion a@ou" children; mini "rie and "he rea on @ehind child79ro"ec"ion 9rocedure . Re"erence C'ec% .olun"eer are a 6ed "o 9ro=ide "hree re8erence 8rom "he 8ollowing li " Former or 9re en" 9a "or Long7"ime 8riend 1minimum o8 5 #ear 3 /ne 9aren" 18or minor 3 $eacher 18or minor 3 Congrega"ional mem@er 1who ha 9er onal ha@i" and charac"er3 &m9lo#er or colleague ," lea " "wo o8 "he e re8erence will @e con"ac"ed. $he 9er on ma6ing "he con"ac" B "he da"eB and a ummar# o8 "he re8erence; commen" will @ecome 9ar" o8 "he indi=idual; 8ile. u88icien" "reng"h o8 rela"ion hi9 "o commen" on "he indi=idual;

Police Recor s C'ec% $he church re er=e "he righ" "o a 6 8or a 9olice record chec6 8or =olun"eer . 1,ll alaried "a88 u@mi" "o a 9olice record chec6 8or "heir own 9ro"ec"ion and 8or "he 9ro"ec"ion o8 "he church.3
, 9olice record chec6 will @e reGuired in "ho e in "ance where omeone i a new re iden" or un6nown "o "he church communi"# or where an a99lican"; re8erence canno" @e 8ull# =eri8ied. :inor 1under 16 #ear o8 age3 are eAem9" 8rom a 9olice record chec6. $he church will 9a# 8or "he co " o8 a 9olice record chec6. $he 9olice record chec6 re9or" i "o @e @rough" "o "he 9a "or or de igna"ed leader. %8 "here i no criminal recordB "he =olun"eer ma# @e con idered 8or ongoing er=ice in "he church. %8 "here i a criminal record or in8orma"ion "ha" rai e concernB "he 9a "or and mini "r# leader will mee" wi"h "he =olun"eer "o di cu and re ol=e "he ma""er.

From www.BuildingChurchLeader .com ! 2005 Chri "iani"# $oda# %n"l

%8 "he o88en e i o"her "han child or eAual a@u eB "he =olun"eer ma# 9roceed wi"h mini "r# in "he church 9ro=ided @o"h "he 9a "or and mini "r# leader agree. $he 8ollowing are cri"eria "o con ider when e=alua"ing "he in8orma"ion $he num@er and "#9e o8 con=ic"ion $he age and circum "ance o8 "he o88ender a" "he "ime o8 "he o88en e $he leng"h o8 "ime @e"ween 9a " criminal ac"i=i"# and "he 9re en" $he conduc" and circum "ance o8 "he indi=idual ince "he o88en e $he li6elihood o8 "he indi=idual re9ea"ing "he o88en e %8 an# o88en e i rela"ed "o "he a@u e o8 children or i o8 a eAual na"ureB "he 9ro 9ec"i=e =olun"eer will no" @e a99ro=ed 8or mini "r# wi"h childrenB #ou"hB or =ulnera@le 9eo9le in "he church. 5ill religiou con=er ion ma6e a di88erence 8or omeone who ha @een guil"# o8 9a " a@u e? 0o. /cca ionall#B a 9er on ma# 8reel# admi" "o a 9rior inciden"B @u" in i " "ha" ince "henB he or he ha had a con=er ion eA9erience and now 9re en" no ri 6. $he a8e " cour e i "o encourage uch an indi=idual "o wor6 in "he churchB @u" in a 9o i"ion no" in=ol=ing acce "o childrenB #ou"hB or o"her =ulnera@le 9eo9le. $hi i a rea ona@le accommoda"ion o8 "he indi=idual; de ire "o er=e in "he church. , church "ha" 9ermi" uch an indi=idual "o wor6 wi"h childrenB #ou"hB or o"her =ulnera@le 9eo9leB on "he @a i o8 "he 9ro8e ed religiou con=er ionB will ha=e a =ir"uall# inde8en i@le 9o i"ion hould ano"her inciden" o8 a@u e occur. $he de8en eH"ha" "he a@u er claimed "o ha=e @een con=er"edHwould li6el# @e =iewed wi"h deri ion @# a ci=il cour". +u""ing a 6nown a@u er in a 9o i"ion in=ol=ing acce "o childrenB #ou"hB or o"her =ulnera@le 9eo9le i "a6ing an enormou ri 6. $he in8orma"ion con"ained in "he 9olice record chec6 re9or" i con idered "ric"l# con8iden"ial. /nl# "he 9a "or and council chair9er on or "he manager or direc"or o8 a church mini "r# or o88ice can @e 9ri=# "o "he in8orma"ion.

Appro*al $he 9a "or or de igna"ed leader will re=iew all =olun"eer a99lica"ion ma"erial B which will @e 6e9" in a con8iden"ialB ecure 8ile 8or a minimum o8 e=en #ear .

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itional Resources

-urther sources o, help ,or volunteer applications.


Building Church Leaders: .eadership training resources from Christianity oday !nternational

www.'uildingChurch.eaders.com *+olunteer /evelopment- training theme and (ower(oint *Cultivating ,ctive Church 5embers- (ractical Skills *Screening Childrens Workers- article

Building Childrens Ministry: Childrens ministry training resources from Christianity oday !nternational and Willow Creek ,ssociation

www.'uildingChildrens5inistry.com *!nterview and 2valuate +olunteers*/evelop .eaders for Childrens 5inistry*9ecruit and 9etain +olunteers-

Children's Ministry Volunteers that Stick by Dim Wideman G7roup (ublishing, %==:H !S'0) =F;::%;FIFJ

Effecti e Child !rotection by 2ileen 5unro GS,72 (ublications, %==%H !S'0) =F;$EF=>%FJ

"andbook for Child !rotection !ractice by 8oward /ubowit" and /iane /e(anfilis, editors GS,72 (ublications, $EEEH !S'0) =F;$E$IF$>J

Volunteer #ob $escriptions and Action !lans by 5arlene Wilson G7roup (ublishing, %==:H !S'0) =F;::%F:F:J

Volunteer %ecruitment& 'nter iewing& and !lacement by 5arlene Wilson, editor G7roup (ublishing, %==:H !S'0) =F;::%F:>%J

From www.BuildingChurchLeader .com ! 2005 Chri "iani"# $oda# %n"l