Unit safeguarding guidelines

Share these guidelines with visitors to your unit meetings - they cover the basics of keeping a meeting safe

A basic approach to safe practice within the unit, supporting the training carried out in a safe space.

This guide is designed for visitors to a Girlguiding unit who haven't done a disclosure check and references. More information is available in our recruitment and vetting policy.

Principles of a safe space

You should always:

  • Act as a positive role model at all times.
  • Be fair and treat everyone equally and with respect and dignity.
  • Avoid physical contact wherever possible.
  • Ask for help if you're unsure of a situation or your responsibilities.
  • Report any allegations, concerns or disclosure to the unit leader or appropriate Girlguiding volunteer as soon as possible.

You should never:

  • Act inappropriately.
  • Show favouritism.
  • Trivialise or ignore bullying or other concerns.
  • Make suggestive or discriminatory comments.
  • Put yourself in a situation of unnecessary risk or danger.
  • Be in a situation where you're unsupervised with girls or young members.

Download these guidelines

The unit safeguarding guidelines are also available as a PDF.

Download the guidelines PDF

If you become aware of a concern, you must:

  • Remain calm and approachable.
  • Listen carefully without interrupting.
  • Acknowledge that you appreciate how difficult this may be.
  • Make it clear that you’re taking what's being said seriously. Don't give your opinion.
  • Reassure them they’ve done the right thing in telling you and that you’ll do your best to help.
  • Tell the unit leader (or appropriate Girlguiding volunteer) immediately in a private confidential place where possible.
  • Write precise notes of what was said (don't paraphrase), and sign the page with your name, and the date. Give them to the same volunteer you've informed. Record only what's been said to you.
  • Don't promise confidentiality.
  • Ask the person involved whether they have any concerns about you sharing this information and confirm it doesn’t put them at risk.

If you're concerned about the safety or wellbeing of a young person you must remain calm and tell the unit leader (or appropriate Girlguiding volunteer) immediately.

Safeguarding at Girlguiding

Safeguarding is at the heart of everything we do in Girlguiding, and it’s the responsibility of all of us. 

You share this responsibility to protect and promote the safety and wellbeing of girls, young women and adults as you help them reach their full potential through great guiding experiences. It’s our policy to safeguard all adults and children while they take part in Girlguiding activities. This is regardless of any characteristic, (protected or otherwise) or background.

If you have any questions or concerns, or want to know more about Girlguiding’s safeguarding policy, you can contact the HQ safeguarding team on [email protected] or call 020 7834 6242 ext. 3037.