How to Protect Your Church During Fall Festival Season

For many, fall is the most beautiful time of year. It can also be the most dangerous time of year and, if you’re not careful, the most expensive time of year.

Fall festivals are a fantastic way to bring the community into your church and, conversely, bring your church to the community. However, with all of the enjoyable games and entertainment, there is a higher risk of accident than exists during regular church activities. The risks of giant inflatable playgrounds need not be explained.

Here are a few steps to minimize risk this fall.

Assign at least two supervisors for each area

No matter how small or seemingly safe the activity, there should be at least two supervisors at each area. If you have teenage volunteers, make sure that they are paired with an adult. This is to decrease the likelihood that a volunteer is caught off-guard, or perhaps pressured into allowing unsafe activities.

At least one of the supervisors present at the festival should be CPR trained, just in case there is an emergency.

Screen and train all volunteers

Volunteers are a blessing to a church. They are usually genuinely concerned with the safety and spiritual growth of young people. That being said, it is wise to conduct background checks on all volunteers and to provide proper training when necessary.

If background screening is new to your church, take a look at this simple checklist from our partners at Brotherhood Mutual.

Safely install any inflatables

Inflatable bounce houses are incredibly fun and even serve as a form of advertising. What screams "fun" more than a giant red and yellow blob full of laughing children? However, they may also be the most dangerous pieces of equipment you’ll encounter all year.

A recent study by the publication Pediatrics revealed that about 30 children are sent to the emergency room with injuries related to bounce house accidents every day! Most of these incidents happen due to failure to follow manufacturer guidelines during set up and placement of the inflatable.

If possible, have the rental company install the inflatables to eliminate any possibility of an error on your part.

Require Activity Participation Agreements

A precaution like this can keep the church from being held legally liable for certain accidents. This type of agreement will let participants (and their parents) know what kind of activities they can expect at the event and the responsibility they are assuming through their participation.

Contact your insurance agent to discuss liability exposure

Your particular policy may contain important information that would let you know your level of exposure during Fall Festival events. This is one of the benefits of having a good insurance agent with whom you have a strong relationship.

Consider these important points to ensure a safe, enjoyable fall festival season. And contact us if you are concerned about your preparedness for Fell Festival season.

Contact one of our agents today to make sure your church is adequately prepared and that your liability exposure is limited.

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