All organisations working with children and young people should be committed to promoting their welfare and protecting them from harm. This is everyone’s responsibility and everyone who comes into contact with children and families has a role to play.

A Safeguarding policy is useful to solve problems and mitigate risks. A well-developed safeguarding policy will ensure that everyone in an entire organisation knows what is expected of their organisation, their management and themselves to keep children safe. Its most important function is to reduce the risk of a child being harmed but it also ensures that organisations are protected from risks: e.g. financial, reputational, litigation and many others.

In short, a policy tells staff how things are done in an organisation, and that is another way of saying ‘This is how we expect things to be done’. Once the ground rules are established, the policy should say how the organisation intends to check and assure itself that everyone is doing what they should.

NVR South Admin@nvrsouth.org – provides information about safeguarding children and young people in the South of England:

Policy statement

NVR South will work with children, parents and the community to ensure we support children’s rights and create and maintain the safest possible environment for children and their families.

We do this by:

  • Recognising that all children have the right to freedom from abuse and harm
  • Promoting joint work with parents and carers in the interest of children’s welfare
  • Following safe recruitment procedures which ensure that staff are carefully selected, vetted and have the relevant qualifications and experience.
  • Ensuring that all staff are aware of and accept responsibility for helping to prevent the abuse of child
  • Designating a Child Protection Officer (DCP = Lead Practitioner) who takes specific responsibility for children’s protection, safety and well-being
  • Supporting all staff in bringing concerns to the Designated Child Protection Officer
  • Responding quickly and appropriately to all suspicions or allegations of abuse
  • Providing parents, carers, and children with the opportunity to voice any concerns they may have. This includes having knowledge of, and ensuring children have access to their preferred methods of communication and that staff are trained in a variety of communication tools.
  • Adopting positive behaviour management strategies which are non-violent and do not impose humiliation
  • Reviewing the effectiveness of the organisation’s Child Protection Policy and Procedures
  • Working in partnership with external organisations and professionals to ensure that children are protected
  • All staff and volunteers to have up to date full DBS checks and certificates

Useful resources for voluntary organisations working with children and young people can be found on the NSPCC website: www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/safeguarding/

These include:

The following guidance is also relevant:

Working Together to Safeguard Children 2015

www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/419595/Working_Together_to_Safeguard_Children.pdf

Information sharing:

www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/419628/Information_sharing_advice_safeguarding_practitioners.pdf

What to do if you’re worried about a child:

www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/419604/What_to_do_if_you_re_worried_a_child_is_being_abused.pdf

It is important to emphasise that everybody in whatever role working with children and young people has a duty to safeguard children and to report concerns about their safety and wellbeing. If you have any concerns that a child may be being abused, maltreated or neglected please ring Southampton’s Children’s Services Contact Team on 02380 833336  They will be able to advise on what action, if any needs to be taken. If your concern is out of hours please call the Emergency Duty Team (5pm to 9am, Weekends and Bank Holidays) 02380 233344.

Outside of local council borough contact details will be provided for your individual area.