Safe Environment Page
Welcome to the Saint Mark Parish and School Volunteer page!
Thank you for your interest in helping at our parish.
Archdiocesan policy requires that all adults (school/parish staff, parish/school volunteers, coaches) having access to or regular contact with minors comply with all Safe Environment requirements, including background clearances, training, etc, prior to helping. This page was created to assist you, by providing the links, forms and information, making it easier for you to follow and to access from home. You can also request a physical volunteer packet by contacting the Safe Environment office.
Information for Volunteers
Thank you to all our volunteers for all you do to support our Parish and School! The following information provides the Safe Environment guidelines which reflect the changes to the Pennsylvania Child Protective Services laws which came into effect in 2015.
Take a few minutes to select the type of volunteer you would like to be, under the “Required Forms and Trainings” section below. Then request the required forms and register for the needed training(s) listed in that section. Once completed, please return the information/results to the parish safe environment office in order for you to continue your ministry to children of our parish/school.
Upcoming Classes for Volunteers
As per the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, beginning in July, they will offer Protecting God’s Children as a live online training session facilitated by OCYP staff. Participants will be able to register at www.virtusonline.org and will then receive instructions to log in. Sessions are limited to 20 participants and will be offered during different times of the day. Participants will not be permitted to join without pre-registration and must keep their cameras on throughout the session.
The next live online Awareness session will be held on: Friday, January 8, 2021
10:00 AM. This training will be conducted via a ZOOM meeting.
At registration, you must provide a valid email for us to send the Zoom invitation and you may need to download the ZOOM software or application to your device. Please log in to the session at least 15 minutes prior to the start of training to check in and to ensure that any issues can be resolved. We recommend that you use a desktop, laptop or tablet for the best training experience. No one under the age of 18 will be permitted in the session. Due to the sensitive nature of the material being discussed, please do not have any minors present with you during the session. You will need to remain visible (video-enabled) during the entire session in order to receive credit for attending.
If you are helping or plan to help out this year, or at any time in the future, as a Lector, Eucharistic Minister, Usher, CCD/PREP Teacher/Aide, CYO Coach, parish volunteer, or at the school in the lunchroom or classroom, and will have regular contact with children (at least one time per week), This one-time training is an Archdiocesan requirement.
This session is FREE, but pre-registration on www.virtusonline.org is required.
Don’t miss this opportunity, not many sessions are offered in this area. Register online or by calling our Safe Environment office @ 215-788-7266 asap.
This session is open to everyone, so if you know anyone outside our parish who needs this training, let them know.
Required Forms and Trainings
Please FORWARD THE CLEARANCE CERTIFICATES/RESULTS to St. Mark Parish Safe Environment Office upon completion. Email to email@example.com or mail to St. Mark Parish Office, 1024 Radcliffe Street, 19007 Bristol PA.
Volunteers who reside in Pennsylvania DO NOT have a provisional period and MUST OBTAIN clearances prior to beginning service.
Volunteers who reside in another state or country may serve for no more than 30 days as long as they provide clearances from their state or country of residence.
For additional information, please visit the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office of Child and Youth Protection website or call the St. Mark Safe Environment Coordinator at (215) 788-7266 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Important: No Employee or volunteer should begin work with children without the PA State Police Criminal Record Check, Child Abuse Clearance, signed Mandated Reporter Acknowledgement and Disclosure for Provisional Employment or Volunteer Disclosure Forms.
Employees – If they are a new hire and live out of state, the Pastor may permit them to work with children during a provisional period (90 days) if they can show proof that background check requests have been submitted, as long as they provide clearances from their state or country or residence. Their work with children must also be supervised during this period.
Volunteers – If they have not lived in PA for 10 continuous years, they will have 30 days provisional period to provide clearances.
Those who do not comply will be moved to “inactive status” and are not to be permitted to work with children until all requirements have been met.