Category: News

Childrens School Fundraising

Children’s drawings raise funds at Christmas

Croydon based Kids Cards© at DPIdigital was launched for the academic year 2005 in an attempt to raise at least £20,000 for schools and charities this Christmas. Following several successful years, the project has been continued for 2009.

Schools are invited to participate by getting their pupils to draw or paint a Christmas scene on A4 paper. These are then sent off to the printers to be professionally scanned and printed before despatch to the school or parents. There is no competition so all children get to see their cards printed once their parents have decided to purchase the cards.

Parents at several schools are already excited at the opportunity of having professional produced cards drawn by their children. One parent, Steve Blake, said “This project gives children a sense of achievement at having produced their own cards and is an opportunity for their creative abilities to be stretched. The quality of the sample card is excellent and we are looking forward to being different and sending out our children’s cards this Christmas.”

Every pack raises money for the school and parents can sell the concept on to local businesses and organisations to raise additional funds.

The creative design and copyright of the idea came from Michael Sebaduka, the print operations director of DPI Digital. Michael said “We are delighted to be involved in this programme which helps schools raise funds for much needed projects”.

Kids Cards is supported by Access Underwriting®, leading charity insurance brokers, as part of their corporate community involvement programme.

If any school wishes to get involved they can contact Kids Cards on 0208 689 3124 or visit their website at

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Church Insurance Claims

Church Insurance Claims

There is a saying that the proof of the pudding is in the eating. With insurance however, you don’t really get to see the pudding, let alone eat it unless there is a claim to be made. We are therefore publishing some examples of claims dealt with by a specialist church insurer, Congregational & General.

If you would like us to help you with any aspect, please contact us via this link Church Insurance Enquiry

Beautiful Twelfth Century Church Destroyed

St Wandregesilius Church in Bixley, near Norwich was gutted by fire on 13 May 2004. The church, dating back to 1272, is named after St Wandregesilius, a 7th century French Abbot who was the Patron Saint of Flemis. Saint Wandregesilius is a remote, rural church situated at the end of a farm track. It had a small congregation who met at the church around four or five times a year.

The church didn’t have electricity and used gas cylinders for heating. It is believed that the fire was started by vandals in the church using one of these gas cylinders.

Eleven fire vehicles arrived to tackle the blaze, but unfortunately they were unable to prevent extensive damage taking place. The gas cylinders, located in the church, also intensified the damage by exploding in the vast heat.

Once the blaze was extinguished, it was established that everything inside had been destroyed, except for the brass set in the floor and the monuments.

Congregational & General Insurance plc was the insurer of this historic church and, once they had confirmation of the incident, they appointed their loss adjusters to assess the damage. Once reports were received, they quickly settled this claim and paid £500,000 to the trustees of Bixley church. The decision has been made not to rebuild the church due to its remoteness, but the money has been put back into churches in the Norwich area.

Historic Quaker Meeting House Fire

On 11 March 2005 a fire broke out in historic Jordans Meeting House in Buckinghamshire, and nearly destroyed its structure.

Jordans is one of the oldest and most historic Quaker Meeting Houses in the world. The building had retained its original roof tiles, window glass and benches as the Quakers had built it in 1688, after the Declaration of Indulgence by James II. The Meeting House is also the burial site of William Penn, founder and first governor of Pennsylvania, as well as Thomas Ellwood, the friend of John Milton, the poet, both famous Quakers.

The fire began in the caretakers flat and ripped through the building, destroying the roof, timbers and library. Fortunately, some areas of the Meeting House have remained intact, such as the 17th century gallery and lobby. Many of the historic artefacts such as the William Penn memorabilia have either survived or can be restored.

Congregational & General initially appointed Burgoynes Consulting Scientists to assess the damage. Once they had received their report, a “tin hat” cover was erected over the building to prevent any further damage occurring. Architects have been appointed and it is estimated that it will take around 18 months to fully complete the restoration of this Grade I listed building.

Update January 2007.  A significant amount of the restoration work is now finished including the roof being completely replaced.  The drying and restoration of the interior took longer than expected due to the discovery of asbestos in the flooring and the need to ensure that the timbers did not dry too quickly and warp.


This article was sourced from the Autumn 2005 issue of Church Life from Congregational & General Insurance plc.


It is always difficult to forsee or prevent your church being a victim of vandalism or arson, however Congregational tries to help by providing advice through their useful guide provided by the Arson Prevention Bureau.

If you wish to obtain a free copy of this church guide please leave a contact message on this link.

It is always best to take professional advice from an insurance broker than risking dealing with the insurance direct with an insurer who is only acting to protect their own interests and not yours!

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Volunteer Organisations Risk Management

The Volunteer Dilemma

Charities, schools, and care homes all make use of voluntary helpers for a wide range of activities including helping with trips and visits, fetes and garden parties or with fund-raising activities from sponsored walks to parachute drops. However, unlike dealing with employees, the lines of responsibility for volunteers are unclear and there is often doubt as to who is actually in charge.

Volunteers are often more difficult to co-ordinate, supervise and discipline. Plus, they often involve older age groups who are less aware of hazards, rules, regulations and modern practices. On the other hand, their enthusiasm and willingness to help is often much greater. However, they are not exempt from all the rules and regulations that govern employees.

HSE Guidance

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in its Guidance Note Ref: HSG 192 Charity and Voluntary Workers: a guide to health and safety at work considers it good practice for a ‘volunteer user’ to provide the same level of health and safety information instruction and training as they would in an employer/employee relationship and that the same level of health and safety protection should be provided irrespective of whether there are strict legal duties.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) considers it good practice for a ‘volunteer user’ to provide the same level of health and safety information instruction and training as they would in an employer/employee relationship.

Risk Assessments

The organisation must undertake specific risk assessments of all activities involving volunteers and provide the appropriate instruction and training. Policies and procedures must be developed to cover all activities both permanent and temporary including fundraising.

A risk management system should include the facility for ongoing auditing and monitoring to ensure that procedures are adapted to meet changing circumstances.

Record Keeping

A register of volunteers should be maintained so that the organisation knows exactly who is working on its behalf.

Volunteers must know precisely what their duties comprise, to whom they report and the procedures that are in place to perform them. They should also have the necessary instruction, information and training and protective equipment to carry out these duties safely.

Volunteer Appraisals

A formal appraisal system should be introduced to ensure that volunteers are able to continue undertaking their duties without risks to their health, safety and welfare.

The health of the volunteer should be discussed to ensure that they are still able to undertake their duties and that they are still happy to continue doing so. With increasing numbers of older volunteers it is possible that persons may be undertaking duties for which they are no longer suited, such as jobs involving manual handling or climbing stairs.

The appraisal should be carried out by the Personnel Officer, if there is one, or the person with overall responsibility for volunteers.

Ideally this exercise should be undertaken on an annual basis and in the long term should help to reduce accidents and enable the organisation to maintain a team of loyal, dedicated and hard working volunteers.


Please note that this is only a brief overview and is based on our understanding of current law and practice. Legal advice must be obtained if you are unsure of any of your responsibilities.


This article was sourced from the December 05 update from The Ecclesiastical Insurance Group newsletter.


Ecclesiastical, in addition to their seminars provide Guidance Notes for charities and care homes. They contain further information on how to conduct a risk assessment.

If you wish to obtain a free copy of the please leave a contact message on this link.

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