Safeguarding Children

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1.  Introduction

1.1 The Objectives of The Trust are

  • To preserve, conserve, and protect the land owned by the Trust; its terrestrial and aquatic life and their habitats.
  • To provide facilities for public enjoyment and appreciation of the wildlife of that land.
  • To advance public education in the study of and research into the river valleys and their conservation.

1.2 As part of those objectives, volunteers of the Trust will from time to time have contact with children.  Children are defined as any individuals under the age of eighteen.

1.3 These guidelines seek to protect our organisation and volunteers from accusations of misconduct and support the Trust’s Volunteer Policy.

2.  Policy

2.1 Malmesbury River Valleys Trust is committed to taking all reasonable steps to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of everyone involved in its activities, regardless of their age, disability, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, and so on.

2.2 The Trust is committed to safeguarding the welfare of all children and to take all reasonable steps to promote safe practice.

3. Guidelines for Volunteers

3.1   Be aware that contact with a child, however well intentioned, may be misrepresented.

3.2   Physical contact or manual touching should only be used when appropriate, necessary,  and proportionate for the circumstances and that the purpose is clear, for example for administering first aid.

3.3   Maintain clear professional boundaries.

3.4   Establish with parents/guardian or teachers before the start of an activity who is responsible for the children’s behaviour and what sanctions may be appropriate or necessary.

3.5   Ensure that parents/guardian or teachers are always present.  Avoid being alone with a child.

3.6   If taking photographs, obtain permission (in writing if possible) from the parent/guardian or teacher first.

3.7   Use language which is appropriate to children at all times.

3.8   Never use behaviour that is likely to humiliate a child.

3.9   Be aware of cultural differences.

4.  Supporting Legislation

The Protection of Children Act 1999
The Children Act 1989 (England and Wales)
The Police Act 1987
Safe From Harm: A Code of Practice for Safeguarding the Welfare of Children in Voluntary Organisations in England and Wales, Home Office 1993