26 September, 2019

Working with Children Checks

What is a Working with Children Check, and do I need one?

A Working with Children Check (WWCC) is a government assessment to check whether or not an individual is safe to work with children.

A WWCC is needed for all people who work or volunteer with children, however given the definition of 'child related work' in South Australia (see here for details), the Uniting Church has decided that everyone in a role of responsibility within the church (ie. all leaders and helpers aged 14+) must have a valid WWCC.

What about the previous Police Check forms?

The new WWCCs were introduced on 1 July 2019 and are stronger, more effective and more transparent than the previous Uniting Church Screening Checks ('Police Checks').

Effective 30 June 2020, the previous Uniting Church Screening Checks (ie. the previous 'Police Checks') are no longer recognised under law, even if they have not yet expired.

I already have a valid DHS/DCSI clearance... do I need to do anything?

Yes - you need to do two things:

  1. Inform our Safe Church Congregation Liaison (Sue Laycock) who will make a record of the number.
  2. Complete this online form, entering the number of your valid clearance at Question 12/13 ('Details of your existing Working with Children Check') and continuing to see whether further Screening Checks are required. This enables the Uniting Church to register an interest in your valid DHS/DCSI clearance.

Note: If you are a teacher, please read this info sheet that has been written following numerous unsuccessful attempts by many of our teachers to organise a current WWCC through the SA UCA website.

What's the difference between the old and new checks?

There are several differences, including:

  • The new checks are portable, in other words WWCCs from another organisation are now able to be recognised by the Uniting Church, ie. there is no longer a need to complete a specific Uniting Church check if you already have a valid WWCC through another organisation (eg. via the Education Department)
  • The new checks are valid for 5 years (previously 3 years) and are now continuously monitored

The new checks remain free for all volunteers. For more FAQs see pp.5-6 of the Information on the Screening and Authority Process information sheet.

I think I may need a new WWCC... what do I need to do?

Make yourself a cup of tea and head over to our Screening Checks resource page for further information.

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17 September, 2019

Duty of Care at CoroUniting

As a church community, CoroUniting fully embraces the SA Synod Safe Church Policy as an integral part of our Duty of Care. An important part of this relates to children in our care and is covered in detail on our Child Safety at CoroUniting resource page.

Other aspects of our Safe Church Duty of Care are:

Authorising and Appointing Leaders

When appointing leaders to positions of trust, influence or authority, we adhere to the Safe Church Authorisation and Appointment process detailed in the SA Synod Duty of Care Policy. This includes applying the six-month rule, ensuring successful screening and interviewing and checking references.

All volunteers and lay leaders are also required to complete a Code of Conduct for Volunteers and Lay Leaders. Our Confidentiality Agreement is for those where further confidentiality is needed, eg. finance or property teams.

Screening Checks

In addition to the new Working with Children Check (WWCC), additional checks are required for those volunteers or staff who deal with money, drive people to/from church activities or engage in intentional pastoral care on behalf of the congregation.

See our Screening Checks resource page for further information.

Event Planning (incl. Risk Assessment)

There are a lot of factors to consider when planning an event, especially with the Work, Health and Safety Act of 2012 in SA.

You can use this Event Planning Guide (incl. checklist) to help you through the process. This is a fillable PDF with links to the various forms including:

Incident Reporting

This Incident Report form (CoroUniting) is to be used to report all accidents/incidents and near misses (as defined in the Incident Management Policy & Procedure). This will then be passed to the Church Council Secretary who, if required, will then complete the official Incident Report form and immediately pass this on to the SA Synod office to ensure SafeWork SA can be notified, where required, as per the Work Health and Safety Act 2012.

Food Safety

Refer to the SA Health web page Charity and community groups and food safety for up to date information about food safety.

Everyone who handles food in relation to a CoroUniting church activity must read and sign the below policy and pass this to the Safe Church Congregation Liaison (Sue Laycock) for filing.

Sausage Sizzles and BBQs

Refer to the following two resources that relate specifically to sausage sizzles and BBQs:

Code of Ethics Training

This training course introduces a code of ethics that includes training on the awareness of the prevention of sexual misconduct. It is mandatory for all Ministers and Pastors with a 3-hour refresher course to be held annually.

Called to Care Orientation Sessions

Called to Care Orientation Sessions promote and assist the Uniting Church community with relevant information about ensuring a safe physical, emotional and spiritual environment. In order for our ministry to be effective we need to incorporate safe and best practices in leadership, in our programs, our actions, our behaviours and within our facilities, and this session looks at people-centred solutions to:

  • Pastoral care
  • Risk management for People and Property
  • Healthy governance
  • Up to date employment/volunteer practices

More information, including training dates can be found on the SA Synod Safe Church Training Courses web page. We will cover the cost of anyone working or volunteering with children within the church who would like to undergo this course. Please contact our Safe Church Congregation Liaison (Sue Laycock) to make the necessary arrangements.

More Information

Reporting concerns and matters of abuse

Current situations: If you believe a child or adult is in immediate danger please call SA Police on 000.

If the concern relates to a child at risk of harm or potentially at risk call the Child Abuse Report Line (CARL) on 13 14 78.

If any of the above involves any person in a leadership / role of responsibility within the church please notify the Safe Church Committee by telephoning (08) 8236 4268 or by email.

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17 September, 2019

Child Safety at CoroUniting

As a church community, CoroUniting takes the safety of the children in our care very seriously. The new Working with Children Checks that need to be undertaken for anyone in a role of responsibility with children are an important part of this.

Working with Children Checks

Working with Children Checks (WWCCs) are a government assessment to check whether or not an individual is safe to work with children.

See our Working with Children Checks resource page for further information.

Responding to Child Abuse and Neglect

Any person who works or volunteers in a church is obliged by law to notify the Department for Child Protection (formerly Families SA) if they suspect on reasonable grounds that a child or young person has been or is being abused or neglected and the suspicion is formed in the course of the person's work (whether paid or voluntary) or in carrying out official duties.

Notification to the Child Abuse Report Line (13 14 78) must be made as soon as practicable after the person forms the suspicion. See below for more information.

Safe Environments Training

Part of the church's ongoing best practices is to provide training opportunities for people to understand their legal responsibility for Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect. We offer the “Safe Environments – Through their eyes” training course. This is the standard accredited package with all trainers approved by the department to deliver this content, however please note that this is not the DECD RAN version of the course. This educative awareness training is for anyone who has contact with children and vulnerable people and covers:

  • What is child abuse and neglect?
  • How to identify it
  • Why, when and how to make a notification
  • How to respond, support and protect a child or young person who has been abused

More information, including training dates can be found on the SA Synod Safe Church Training Courses web page.

CoroUniting church will cover the cost of anyone working or volunteering with children within the church who would like to undergo this course. Please contact our Safe Church Congregation Liaison (Sue Laycock) to make the necessary arrangements.

More Information

Reporting concerns and matters of abuse

Current situations: If you believe a child or adult is in immediate danger please call SA Police on 000.

If the concern relates to a child at risk of harm or potentially at risk call the Child Abuse Report Line (CARL) on 13 14 78.

If any of the above involves any person in a leadership / role of responsibility within the church please notify the Safe Church Committee by telephoning (08) 8236 4268 or by email.

Can't find your ID?

If you have a current, valid Uniting Church Screening Check (ie. the old 'Police Check') and you can't find your ID you can recover this via this online portal.

Additional Screening Checks and further resources

Certain roles within the life of the church require additional Screening Checks as detailed on our Duty of Care at CoroUniting resource page.

See the linked documents and website for further details including links to:

For further information, please contact our Safe Church Congregation Liaison (Sue Laycock) or email Called to Care (Linda Vinall) in the Synod office.

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6 June, 2019

Our Networks

See the linked documents for current information/updates about networks with which Coro is connected.

Generate Presbytery (also see their FB page and the linked Generate Presbytery Info Sheet)

  • Our Presbytery representative is David Thompson

Propel Network (also see their FB page)

Assembly of Confessing Congregations (ACC)

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6 June, 2019

Mental Health Seminars

In May-July 2016, Mark Boyce ran a series of helpful Mental Health Seminars which were very well received. We’ve loaded the videos of the talks to YouTube – refer the linked playlist.

Note that these files are large (around 850MB each when viewed in HD) and you may choose to reduce the quality when you stream them to minimise data usage. Use the settings (cog) icon on the bottom right of the video to adjust the quality.

Copies of the notes handed out each week are also linked.

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28 February, 2019

Website and App Sign Up and Membership

Following the launch of the new website and app last year, ongoing improvements and additions continue to be made. This digital platform provides new opportunities for communication with the ability to RSVP to events, lodge prayer requests (coming soon!), listen to messages, receive notifications according to specific ministries with which you choose to connect and much more.

To make the most of the app and the website (and, if you call CoroUniting your home church, to be able to access information that was previously password-protected, eg. newsletters, minutes etc) you will need to download the app and create an account, or create an account via the website (please note that creating an account on either platform will automatically give you an account for both, however the app requires downloading to have an app account).

Download the app today!

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21 February, 2019

What About Membership?

It is a requirement of the Uniting Church in Australia (UCA) that Church Council keep and maintain a Membership Register at CoroUniting.

The four categories of Membership as defined in the UCA Regulations are:

  • Confirmed Member
  • Member-in-Association
  • Baptised Member
  • Adherent 

There is no obligation to have your name on the Membership Register, but this is necessary if you wish to vote at meetings of the congregation.

Only Confirmed Members and Members-in-Association are eligible to vote at meetings of the congregation.

See the Membership at CoroUniting form for more information and to to sign a declaration for Membership.

Forms are also available at the Welcome Desk or from Sue in the office.

More information about Membership within the UCA can be found in the Uniting Church in Australia Constitution.


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12 October, 2018

New Times

New Times is the voice of Uniting Church SA. Published bi-monthly New Times represents the breadth, diversity and vision of Uniting Church members in South Australia - and beyond.

New Times is produced by Uniting Church SA's Communications team and has received awards for excellence in religious journalism, design and broader work.

The print edition can either be read either online or downloaded from this page. Printed copies are also available from the church foyer.

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6 October, 2018

Forms, Policies & Procedures

See the linked documents and website for further details including links to:

CoroUniting Forms, Policies & Procedures:

  • Registration Form for Sunday Morning Children's Programs (2018)
  • Catastrophic Fire Day Policy (2014)
  • Incident Report (1 page)
  • Health and Hygiene Policy for Food Handlers

See also our separate resource pages for Duty of Care and Child Safety.


Synod/Assembly Forms, Regulations & Policies:

  • Basis of Union (1992 edition)
  • Constitution & Regulations (2015 edition)
  • Regulations (as amended to 30 August 2017)
  • Code of Ethics and Ministry Practice (2010 edition, updated 2012)
  • Manual for Meetings (revised July 2015)
  • Hazard & Risk Register (2016)
  • Incident Report (2014) - for accidents, incidents and near misses
  • Member or Adherent Sexual Abuse and Sexual Misconduct Complaints Policy
  • Policy on the prevention of vilification and harassment within the UCA
  • Social Media Policy
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