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Church Plant Membership

Become a Church Plant Member with ECAP and get the support you need to establish an effective Child Protection Program.

How is the Church Plant Membership different from regular Membership?

The main way that this membership level is different from our other Membership options is that church plant members are not entering the process of self-study and accreditation that regular accreditation candidate members will undergo.

Church plant members gain access to many of the benefits of regular members, with the goal of building out a substantial Child Protection Program at this vital stage of ministry. Once a ministry has moved out of “church plant” mode or built out a compliant Child Protection Program, we would invite them to become accreditation candidates.

Why have a separate category for church plants?

Church plants are in a unique phase of organizational and ministry life, often with many pressing needs and limited resources. We want to support child safety even at the early stages of a ministry’s existence, and we don’t want the regular cost of membership to be a barrier to those ministries seeking to do child safety well. We have collected a number of resources specifically suited to serve church planters as they consider how to implement abuse prevention policies in their ministry.

Why should church planters consider child safety?

If you’re a church planter, maybe you’re thinking, “Child safety? Sure, it’s important, but I’m the only staff member! Maybe when we’re more stable and our organization is more mature.” While the ministry of the word takes precedence, we believe there are at least 3 reasons you should implement child safety measures while your church is still being “planted,” instead of later.

Who Can Apply for a Church Plant Membership?

While there is no standard definition for a “church plant,” the purpose of this membership level is to help ministries in the early phases of their organization’s life, which is typically characterized by limited resources, innovation, and a creative and enthusiastic spirit. Following your application, you will be asked to complete a short survey to help us understand if the Church Plant Membership is right for your organization.

Some characteristics of a potential Church Plant Member:

  • May be in a pre-launch stage (have not started meeting as a church yet)
  • May not have started a children’s ministry yet
  • Existed for 5 years or fewer
  • 2 or fewer full-time staff
  • Fewer than 75 regular attenders
  • Supported by a “sending church” or denomination; considered a “plant” by such a sending organization – May not own their own building; may rent or meet in a house, school, or transitional space
  • Annual operating budget of $100,000 or less
  • Governing/Leadership Board of at least 3 people

Members gain access to even more resources to help them build out their Child Protection Program!

Church Plant Membership

Annual Membership Fee of only $50 for church plants.


Child Safety Resources for Church Planters

What is Accreditation?

Accreditation is an independent process of compliance verification which determines if an organization meets defined standards. ECAP awards accreditation to ministries that demonstrate compliance to Child Safety Standards through an assessment and audit process.

Get started today and unlock access to our affiliates, resources, and community.


For more information on the accreditation process, rates, and more see our Accreditation page and Accreditation White Paper. If you have a question we can answer, simply contact us below and we’ll be happy to help.