Safeguarding Policy

Throughout this document the term young people is intended to include vulnerable adults.

The Council of Management of East Side Youth Centre is firmly committed to the welfare of all young people who use its facilities and protecting them from physical, sexual and emotional harm.

The Club will aim to ensure that all young people meet in a safe environment with people they can trust. It will also ensure that all risks which young people encounter are carefully assessed and the necessary steps taken to minimise and manage them.

All adult leaders will be provided with a copy of this policy and will be requested to indicate their commitment to it by completing a signed copy which will be kept in the club records.

Recruitment

All volunteers should complete an application form supplying the following information:

  • personal details - names of 2 independent referees
  • previous experience - any criminal convictions
  • competencies and areas of interest - signature and date

All leaders and helpers should complete a Disclosure & Barring Service Application) at enhanced level. This check will be will be renewed every 3 years.

All new volunteers must work alongside a fully vetted and trained member of staff until references have been received and the DBS process completed.
In accordance with guidance from the Disclosure & Barring Service a record will be kept of the disclosure number, completion date and whether or not the check is satisfactory. 

Code of Conduct

The Council of Management adheres to the following guidelines as to how young people and adults interact with each other.

• Abusive behaviour and language, violence, aggression, bullying or discrimination will not be tolerated. Leaders will respond quickly and effectively to any such reports which may result in the offender(s) being suspended from the club.

• No alcohol or other intoxicating substances will be consumed on the premises. Leaders will refrain from consuming such substances prior to assuming responsibility for young people.

• The appropriate ratios of leaders to young people will be applied:

  • 1:15 where the element of risk is similar to that encountered in everyday life
  • 1:8 for all trips
  • 1:6 for children under 10 years, or groups with special needs

• Young people are free to leave the club activity when they wish

• Whilst club members are encouraged to stay until the end of club sessions, staff are not able to detain members should they wish to leave earlier.  This will be made clear to parents through the parental concent statement.

• Parents or carers involved in sessions are to be DBS checked

• Consequences will be considered and decided if anyone behaves inappropriately in accordance with the Code of Conduct

Training Provision

The contents of this policy (and other club policies) will be included in the induction process for all members of the Council of Management and volunteer leaders. They will be required to attend Safeguarding (Child Protection) training courses offered at regular intervals by Action4Youth.

The Council of Management will insist on attendance at these sessions which will help volunteer leaders understand their responsibilities and provide information on identification and appropriate response to child protection issues.

Dealing with Allegations

The following procedures will apply in the identification or suspicion of abuse towards a young person.

Abuse

There are four types of abuse to which young people can be subjected:

  •  physical abuse
  •  neglect
  •  sexual abuse
  • emotional abuse

If any of these occur, young people often display problems in the following areas:

  • behaviour
  • drugs and alcohol
  • education
  • physical evidence e.g. bruising
  •  mental health
  • relationships

A young person may disclose that he/she is being abused; he/she may show signs of abuse; or he/she may speak about third party abuse.


If abuse is suspected:

Observations, conversations or concerns will be recorded, signed and dated.

• The matter must not be investigated or discussed with anyone other than the Safeguarding Officer or Club Leader.

• The Club Leader/Safeguarding Officer will assess the information and contact the appropriate local statutory services e.g. schools/social services.

• Action4Youth is always available for advice and guidance.

If abuse is reported/alleged:

• The young person will be listened to and encouraged to speak without interruption, comment or judgment.

• It will be explained that information may need to be shared in certain circumstances.

• The matter must not be investigated or discussed with anyone other than the Safeguarding Officer or Club Leader.

• A written account of the report or allegation will be made, signed and dated by two people and the information passed to the Safeguarding Officer or Club Leader.

• Club Leader/Safeguarding officer will inform the appropriate statutory service (school or Social Services).

• If the matter is regarded as critical it should be referred immediately and directly to the Safeguarding Officer of Bucks County Council and details of the referral passed to the Safeguarding Officer/Club Leader as soon as possible.

Protecting Leaders

The Council of Management recognises the importance of protecting its leaders from possible allegations of abuse and recommends the following guidelines:

Leaders should not:

• Be alone with young people

• Lock and unlock premises without another adult present

• Transport young people in a car or mini bus without another adult being present

• Take young people to their homes

• Make inappropriate contact with young people i.e. develop relationships outside the club setting

• Leave young people unattended

• Leave young people in the presence of adults who are not suitably trained

• Leave young people in the presence of adults not known to leaders

• Leave young people in the presence of adults who have not had relevant DBS checks

• Show favouritism to young people within the club

Allegations about Leaders

If any allegation is made or suspicions emerge regarding any volunteer leader of the club, these should be reported to the Safeguarding Officer and Club Leader. If an allegation concerns either of these officers, the report should be made to the Club Chairperson.
If further action is required, the following procedure will apply during which all information relating to the allegation will remain confidential:

• A detailed factual record of the allegation and action taken will be made

• Information will be passed to the Club Chairperson who may contact Action4Youth

• Consideration will be given to the suspension of the person involved taking account of the risks to other young people and the leader concerned

• If the allegation involves a club member, contact will be made with the young person’s parents to advise them of the process

• Relevant external bodies will be advised

Photography

Since young people may be photographed while participating in club events and activities, written permission from parents/guardians will be obtained which will also allow photographic material to be used in the public domain.

Procedure to be adopted by leaders in cases of abuse  

Useful Contacts

Bucks CC Safeguarding Dept. 01296 382070
CEO Action4Youth 01296 631319

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Club Sessions (Term Time only)

Entry £1 per session

Wednesdays

6.30 to 8.30 pm
Years 5, 6 and 7

Fridays

7.30 to 9.30 pm
Includes football and more in Sports Hall
Years 7 to 13.
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