Protecting people from harm in your work as an organisation/group
An important part of the responsibilities of all organisations, whether formal or informal, is to consider and take action to protect people who come into contact with your voluntary, community, social enterprise (VCSE) organisation from harm.
This is not just for children but anyone who could be considered vulnerable to being bullied, exploited or abused in a physical or psychological way.
It’s not about taking a ‘standard’ approach to safeguarding, but considering what you do and where you come into contact with people and how you make that safe and respectful.
There’s a lot of information available to support your organisation in considering its work and developing its policies and procedures for safeguarding. Below are some useful links you can use to explore what you may need to do and help you think about how put that into practice.
It may be helpful to ask other VCSE organisations you know or those that undertake similar activities, to share policies, procedures and experiences of safeguarding – we encourage groups to share openly (without disclosing any personal or sensitive information, of course).
If you don’t have much safeguarding knowledge or experience, training will help you understand your responsibilities properly.
You can access free training from: Training and events Safeguarding South Gloucestershire
South Gloucestershire Safeguarding also provides information, advice and updates plus training courses for local individuals and organisations, including volunteers.
Here is a link to be used to report serious concerns: Safeguarding South Gloucestershire
Government guidance on Trustee safeguarding duties can be seen by clicking here. DBS checks on employees and volunteers – anyone with contact or responsibility for vulnerable people or children must be DBS-checked. There is a charge for checks on employees but checks for volunteers are free. More information can be found by clicking here.
Don’t forget to review your policies and procedures regularly and check that everyone understands and follows them – this includes making safeguarding part of the induction or on-boarding of everyone involved in your organisation.
You need to ensure you:
- protect people from harm
- ensure people can raise concerns
- deal with any allegations or incidents
- report to relevant authorities when required.
Useful resources to help you can be found at:
CVS South Gloucestershire is one of many CVS’s (council for voluntary services) and we are here to help support and develop the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector in the area.
Please contact us on: firstname.lastname@example.org