Safety and Safeguarding Policy

An overview of our Safeguarding policy so you can follow it and keep girls safe

Statement of purpose

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

As a Girlguiding volunteer you share an important 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. So it’s vital that you’re clear about your safeguarding responsibility, and about Girlguiding’s commitment to safeguarding, as set out in this document.

In particular, all volunteers must understand the procedures for recognising, responding to and referring any concerns, allegations or disclosures of harm or abuse in accordance with the Process for receiving disclosures and the Process for  allegations and concerns.

What is Girlguiding’s commitment to safeguarding?

It is Girlguiding’s policy to safeguard our members whilst they take part in Girlguiding activities, especially those who are more vulnerable. We believe that everyone has a right to live free from abuse, exploitation, harm and fear and to enjoy being safe and well.

By following our Safeguarding Policy, procedures and guidance we make Safe Spaces for great Girlguiding, protecting the safety and wellbeing of all our girls, young women and adults.

The Policy

Our policy includes the systems, structures and procedures we have in place for safeguarding. This includes both child protection and the more proactive elements of safeguarding that ensure we create a safe space for girls and young women. It also explains our values around safeguarding and how safeguarding influences all aspects of our work.

We recognise and accept our responsibility to act 'in loco parentis' during organised activities. We also have a responsibility towards all our adult volunteers to take your safety and wellbeing seriously.

We take steps to minimise any possibility that abuse or harm could occur and to make sure we act quickly and appropriately if a concern, allegation or disclosure arises.

We are committed to maintaining good links with the statutory safeguarding authorities and, in particular, will refer an adult volunteer if we have significant concerns about their suitability to work with children and young people or if we have had to withdraw membership.

We only share information outside of Girlguiding about individuals when we really need to, for example when we know or have concerns that someone has been abused or harmed or is at risk of abuse or harm. This applies to girls, young women and adults alike. We also share information when a crime has taken place or we are told it will take place.

Sometimes we are asked to share information about individuals with other organisations when there isn’t a concern about abuse or harm. If this happens, we will only share information when we have that person’s explicit consent to do so.

What to do if you have a concern

If you have a concern about a girl, young woman or adult in Girlguiding you should read our A Safe Space pocket guide and follow the procedure set out in our process for receiving disclosures and our process for allegations and concerns.

You can also contact the Safeguarding team on:

Tel: 0207 834 6242 (usual office hours)

Out of hours emergency phone: 07508 032997

Email: [email protected]

Please note don’t forget to let the Safeguarding team know ASAP if you call the police.

Published: 19 May 2017