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13 June 2019 | Binfield, UK [Giles Barham]  

What better hymn for a day on Risk Management than ‘Blessed Assurance, Jesus is mine’. That was the apt hymn choice as Pastor Ian Sweeney, President of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the UK and Ireland, led worship for a group of Adventist leaders, who came to understand a slew of Insurance policies and Risk Management advice from European and World Church leaders of Adventist Risk Management [ARM].

ARM team1Adventist Risk Management, European office team [Photo credit: A. Andersson]Fifty-three leaders from various institutions around the UK met on the picturesque campus of Newbold College of Higher Education – though they did not have too much time to admire the campus on a gloomy, rainy day as, on Wednesday, 12 June, they paid careful attention to Tim Northrop, President of ARM, along with Vice President for Client Care, David Fournier as they delved into ‘Untangling policies with ARM’.

Sweeney set the tone of the day with a thought provoking and insightful worship focused on Mark 2 from a Health and Safety, Insurance and Risk Management perspective. The overriding message was that our churches should be accessible and safe for all, not only in their physical aspects but even more as a spiritual safe space where nothing can prevent us from meeting Jesus.

Tim NorthropTim Northrop, President of Adventist Risk Management [Photo credit: A. Andersson]Northrop commenced the main proceedings by explaining liability issues that face our Church in modern times and the measures ARM has in place to try and help to protect our members, the reputational image of our Church, and how the legal structure of the Church helps to manage some of those risks. Fournier then went on to discuss risk management protocols and denominational property coverage whilst Graham and Giles Barham from the European office in St Albans spoke on employee benefit policies and membership coverages.

During the interactive sessions the attendees were engaged and animated – answering policy-based questions which tested their learning during the sessions. They used their newly received knowledge to compete for ARM branded giveaways for correctly answering questions based on practical scenarios. These sessions also allowed for Question and Answer periods where attendees could air their burning questions on issues that were important to their individual job roles or gain greater clarity for aspects that they did not perhaps fully understand.

Natalie Davison is youth secretary for the British Union Conference. She found it to be "a very useful session with knowledgeable presenters."

ARM trainingGraham Barham, ARM Regional Manager for Europe and Africa. [Photo credit: V. Hulbert]Graham Barham, Regional Manager for Europe and Africa, was delighted with the way that the attendees engaged and received the training; whilst acknowledging that this was long overdue. “A while ago we had identified that there was a gap in the knowledge of the UK leaders as to the service ARM provides in the World Church structure and further, how the insurance policies provided actually work,” he said. “We often spend time travelling to other territories in the six Divisions of the Church that our St Albans Office serves. We felt it important that appropriate attention was also given to our home Union so they can also benefit from greater understanding.”

Feedback from attendees was extremely positive. Audrey Andersson, Executive Secretary of the Trans-European Division aptly summarised the event: “Sometimes insurance can seem complicated and confusing, but the day really did untangle policies and was interesting and informative. It was inspiring to see the care that ARM has for church members and the organisation.”


tedNEWS Staff: Victor Hulbert, editor; Deana Stojković, associate editor
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