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Prevention and your safeguarding plan

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As the main source of advice and expertise for safeguarding, you’ll play a key role in developing and establishing your organisation’s approach to safeguarding. To do this successfully, your organisation will need a plan to make sure that its policies and procedures are being well used and that it is making everyone aware of how to stay safe.

This may be a single document or plan or it might be part of other organisational planning tools and documentation. This section is written for creating a single standalone document, but you can apply the thinking to other approaches.

Your role is to co-ordinate and maintain the safeguarding plan and review it on a regular basis.

Remember, developing a safeguarding plan takes time and is the responsibility of everyone in your organisation – not just you.

Once you know what you need to do, make a realistic action plan with your senior staff and volunteers. Agree the timeframe, who’s responsible for what and the resources needed to implement ideas.

It’s also a good idea to make safeguarding a standing item for any senior team or trustee meetings. This means you can regularly provide an update on the safeguarding plan and escalate any issues.

In your safeguarding plan you should cover four key areas:

  1. Policy and guidance.
  2. Awareness and prevention.
  3. Staff and volunteer training.
  4. Reporting and response including internal reporting.

Remember that in each area, approaches to safeguarding adults at risk and to safeguarding children should have clear differences that reflect the needs of each group.

Policy and guidance

Once you have a safeguarding policy, your role is to make sure it gets distributed throughout the organisation – to staff, volunteers, and individuals you work with. This could be as simple as including it in all new inductions or having a copy on internal websites. It’s also good practice to make sure the policy is available to the public, for example, by putting it on your external website or a poster.

As with other organisational procedures, your safeguarding policy will need to be reviewed regularly to make sure it’s still fit for purpose. If new legislation or safeguarding guidance comes out, you need to let the senior team know that the policy needs to be updated.

Awareness and prevention

As well as the policy, the plan should consider any other guidelines or activities which help staff and volunteers conduct themselves in a professional and safe manner.

Examples of things to include:

  • A Code of Conduct, which provides the standards expected of everyone in your organisation.
  • Safe recruitment guidance, which outlines how your organisation minimises risk of harm to others from the people you recruit.
  • Communication guidance, which outlines acceptable and safe ways to communicate within your organisation.
  • Digital technology and social media guidance which outlines how to use technology safely and your organisation’s standards for using social media.
  • Photographs, films and media guidance which outline how you will take, store and use media safely and ethically.

Staff and volunteer training

Training helps staff and volunteers to do their role safely and effectively. In your plan you need to identify what your organisation’s training needs are, and how you are going to meet them.

Things to include in your plan:

  • Induction training
  • Awareness training for staff and volunteers
  • Designated Safeguarding Lead training (for your or for your deputies if you have them)
  • Safer recruitment training
  • Training for trustees
  • Training on specific issues relevant to your organisation, like mental health, female genital mutilation or child sexual exploitation

Safeguarding should be included as part of any induction process. It’s also a good idea to work with other teams to keep a record of training, including the type of training and dates. Training should be offered on a regular basis.

  • For more information about training and different providers, read our training page.

Reporting and response

In your plan, you need to include ways you’ll develop or improve the reporting or response procedures.

Things to consider:

  • Systems and processes. For example, a new way of reporting, moving from paper based to electronic or setting up a confidential helpline for those you work with.
  • Internal reviews on safeguarding concerns. You might decide to conduct an internal review, following the closure of a safeguarding concern. This will determine if there are any practices or behaviours which could be changed to make sure a similar incident doesn’t happen in the future.
  • Improvement plans. Practices or policies that have been identified as unsafe may need to have a formal improvement plan in place, to make sure changes are made.

End of year safeguarding report

Every year you should provide the senior team and trustees with an annual safeguarding report.

The report helps your senior team to know how they’re meeting their safeguarding responsibilities. It also highlights the work you’ve been doing and any new issues or challenges faced. You can also use this as the basis for public statements in your Trustees Annual report.

Things to include in the report:

  • Summary of the actions completed from the safeguarding plan, including the key achievements and any issues encountered.
  • Summary of safeguarding concerns for the year, and any lessons learned.
  • Any new issues or risks identified and how these will be mitigated.
  • Recommendations and action for the next year.

More information on trustee and annual reports:

Last reviewed: 06 December 2018

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This page was last reviewed for accuracy on 06 December 2018

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