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Keeping children and young people safe

By Webmaster SJFCC

Keeping children and young people safe

Be Activity Wise

John Wood
Independent Chair
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Safeguarding
Children Boards
c/o 2 Staffordshire Place
Tipping Street
Stafford ST16 2DH
Website: www.staffordshire.gov.uk

Dear Parent/Carer

Keeping children and young people safe – Be Activity Wise and C.H.E.C.K. the details

My purpose in writing is to inform you of the Be Activities Wise campaign that will run during the summer months of 2017 that has been developed through the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Safeguarding Children Boards.

As a parent or carer you will be aware of the arrangements for keeping children and young people safe whilst in school. However, school is not the only place where it is important to make sure that children are safe and well cared for.

At this time of year there are lots of activities being offered for children and young people to take part in. These are many and varied but include sports-based activities, performing arts, music, community- volunteering activities and several more. These activities are often a valuable way for our children and young people to explore new interests, learn new skills, learn to socialise and gain leadership abilities and you will want your child to have fun and get the very best from them.

However, whilst the vast majority of people leading these activities will have your child’s best interest at heart, and give their time because they believe in how much young people can develop through activities held outside of school, there is a potential risk that you need to be aware of.

The reality is that it is not essential for community groups and all activity leaders to undergo safeguarding training to properly care for your child and keep them safe from harm. That means that there is a risk, however small, of some sort of child abuse taking place whether physical, sexual or emotional, but can just as often be about a lack of care and attention.

There is no reason to believe that this is more of a problem in either Staffordshire or Stoke-on-Trent than anywhere else – it can happen anywhere and in any activity. The fact that there are thousands of activity groups being held in hundreds of venues across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent has prompted the Safeguarding Children Boards to take preventative action.

As parents and carers there are some questions that you can ask of the people leading activities. It’s okay to C.H.E.C.K the following with them:

  • C- Are you confident they have the right qualifications to lead the activity?
  • H-Do they have a history of delivering activities?
  • E-Are they experienced in running activities for children and young people?
  • C-Have they undergone any necessary police checks?
  • K-Do they have a good knowledge of their safeguarding responsibilities?

If you are at all unsure or have concerns you can ask to see proof of qualifications from the organisers.

If you want more information about the campaign and the warning signs of child abuse this is available online at:

www.bit.ly/CHECKstaffs for people living in Staffordshire
www.bit.ly/CHECKStoke for people living in Stoke-on-Trent

I take this opportunity to remind you that if you are worried about the safety or welfare of a child or young person, you can either:

  • report your concerns to the professional safeguarding teams, who will investigate:
  • Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s Safeguarding Referral Team :
  • Day (8.30am to 5pm): 01782 235100
  • Night (5pm to 8.30am): 01782 234234
  • Staffordshire County Council’s First Response Service on 0800 1313 126
  • Call the Police on 101
  • If you believe that a child is in immediate danger call the Police on the emergency number 999.

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter I hope that you will find it helpful in our joint efforts to keep your child safe during activities this summer.

Yours sincerely,
John Wood
Independent Chair,
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Safeguarding Children Board

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