Adding new children through My ChurchSuite

Making sure that the details you have for the children in your church are accurate and up-to-date helps to ensure their safeguarding and keeps your children workers informed about how best to look after the children in their care.

My ChurchSuite enables parents to update the details of any children that are linked to them within ChurchSuite. Additionally, and subject to your Children module My ChurchSuite Options, parents may also be able to add new children themselves directly through the My Children section within My ChurchSuite. This allows parents to enter the details of any new additions to their family as soon as they are ready to introduce them to the church, providing as much useful information as they feel comfortable sharing, while at the same time leaving one less job for your admin team to do!

Review your settings

Before parents can begin adding details of their new children, you will first need to decide who you wish to make this functionality available to. Begin by heading into the Children module's settings (click the cog-wheels icon in the upper right hand corner of the module).

Click through to the My ChurchSuite Options tab and ensure that Enable My ChurchSuite access is ticked - the My Children section of My ChurchSuite is turned on or off entirely with this setting. Click Edit to make changes.

On the Settings pop up, select as appropriate...

There are three options for who can add new children: -

  • Allow anyone to add their children (the default)
  • Allow existing parents to add additional children
  • No one can add new children

If you choose to retain the default setting and Allow anyone to add their children, anyone who is able to log into My ChurchSuite (whether an existing parent or not) will see and be able to access the My Children section and the Add child button. Those without linked children currently will of course not see any children listed.

If you select to only Allow existing parents to add additional children, the My Children menu will only be visible to and accessible by parents that already have one or more linked children. The Add child button is available for them to add further children that will also then be linked to them when added. The My Children menu will not be visible or accessible to any person who does not have any existing linked children.

If you select that No one can add new children, the My Children menu will only be visible to those who have existing linked children, but no Add child button will be provided. Those without existing linked children will not see the My Children menu at all.

The parent user experience when selecting Add child is that an Add child page is opened so that they can enter all of the relevant Details for their child, including contact details, medical and additional needs information, Communication options and Photo/Video Consent. When the parent clicks Save Changes, the new child record will be added to the Children module in ChurchSuite and the child will automatically be linked to the parent (and to their other parent by virtue of any linked spouse/partner relationship). The new child is not auto-added to any groups.

Top tip! Pastoral sensitivity

For some people, seeing a My Children menu option every time they access My ChurchSuite may be a painful experience; especially for those that don't yet have children or who may be unable to have children. Rather than turning off the My Children section entirely or setting your ChurchSuite account settings so that no one can add new children, a helpful, more pastorally-sensitive setting might be to Allow existing parents to add additional children. This setting means that only parents with existing linked children will see the My Children menu option, while those with no linked children will not see the My Children menu option at all. This does however mean that new parents who wish to add a first child will need to contact the office to add that child; but once added and linked, the My Children section will then be available to them as an existing parent and they'll be able to add further children in the future. We hope this suggestion is helpful.

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