In any emergency situation, immediate action is required to minimize damages to church members and keep everyone safe. But how can we act immediately for something that we cannot predict?The Merriam-Webster Dictionary website describes an emergency as “an unforeseen combination of circumstances or the resulting state that calls for immediate action. An urgent need for assistance or relief.”
Notice two aspects of the definition: “unforeseen” and “immediate action.” Emergencies are incidents you cannot predict. Tomorrow a fire could break out in your church or school. Perhaps an earthquake occurs in the middle of a church service. Maybe a church member or visitor becomes violent at the end of the sermon.
In any emergency situation, immediate action is required to minimize damages to church members and keep everyone safe. But how can we act immediately for something that we cannot predict?
Emergency Planning Keeps Your Ministry SafeEmergency planning comes in handy when the unpredictable happens. When we create and practice an emergency plan with church members, we provide the knowledge needed for immediate action during an emergency.
While we cannot predict when this circumstance may happen, we can identify potential risks that our ministries may face throughout the year. Consider the location of your church. What common storms or natural disasters occurred in the past in your area? What potential situations might your church find itself in during the year?
When you have created a list of these potential risks and emergencies, make an emergency plan with your Safety Committee. Outline how church members should respond and what immediate actions to take. Be sure to include steps for during and after the emergency, as well as measures to return to normal operations.
How to Better Equip Your Church for EmergenciesCreating a plan is only the first step in safeguarding your church. The next step is to practice the plan with church members and visitors. This allows church members to better understand how to respond to an emergency situation and helps divert a crisis which could be potentially dangerous. Members can learn the plan, ask questions, and become familiar with what to do when an emergency happens.
Adventist Risk Management, Inc. (ARM) recommends practicing your plan, at a minimum, twice a year. To help you get started, ARM invites you to take part in Safety Sabbath on March 24, 2018. Safety Sabbath is an annual event where churches are encouraged to conduct a safety drill. Whether you choose a fire drill, active shooter drill, earthquake drill or any other emergency situation, this is an excellent time to conduct your first safety drill of the year.
ARM invites you to register for Safety Sabbath at SafetySabbath.com to begin preparing your church to conduct a drill. Once registered, you will receive emergency planning resources, as well as information sheets on your chosen drill. You will also have the opportunity to receive a completion certificate if your church participates in Safety Sabbath.
ARM aims to provide the education and tools to create a safe environment for your ministry, wherever your church is located. Participating in Safety Sabbath is a significant step to take towards safety and risk management for your church. Get started today at SafetySabbath.com.