We have a wide range of expertise and experience to help you provide a safe environment for all. If you are a trustee of a community building in rural Yorkshire or if you are a Community First Yorkshire member there is a wealth of support and advice that we can offer you to help strengthen your safeguarding policies and procedures. Rural communities are defined by DEFRA as settlements with a population of 10,000 or less.
Safeguarding is everyone's responsibility
We are working with the ACRE Network to promote good safeguarding practice to village and community halls.
We want to make sure that the voluntary management committees that run halls and community buildings in Yorkshire have the knowledge and confidence to provide a safe environment for all.
The aim is to improve the awareness of the importance of safeguarding, provide advice and examples of best practice to ensure management committees fully understand their responsibilities and current legislation around safeguarding, and have appropriate and proportionate policies and procedures in place.
The Charity Commission defines the safeguarding responsibilities of charity trustees, which is also best practice for non-charity voluntary committees as:
“Protecting people and safeguarding responsibilities should be a governance priority for all charities. It is a fundamental part of operating as a charity for the public benefit. As part of fulfilling your trustee duties, you must take reasonable steps to protect from harm people who come into contact with your charity. This includes: people who benefit from your charity’s work,staff, volunteers and other people who come into contact with your charity through its work.
The Charity Commission will hold trustees to account if things go wrong and will check that trustees followed this guidance and the law.”
The resources below will help all village and community hall management committees be confident they are following best practice and are doing everything they can to keep the communities using their spaces safe.
Read our guide that recommends that recommends ten actions that trustees should take to ensure good safeguarding governance.
We also provide links below to local authority safeguarding contacts for accessing information on safeguarding in your area and what to do if you suspect that either an adult or child is at risk of harm.
Further resources can be accessed through the below list of organisations with useful safeguarding resources on their websites.
Look out for our regular training sessions covering:
- The importance of safeguarding in the context of running a community building.
- Steps to take to help you provide a safe environment for all.
- What to do if you suspect an adult or child is at risk of harm.
Become a Community First Yorkshire member to access a wealth of additional information sheets, model templates and resources on a wide range of topics to support the running and development of your community building.
Peer Support Network
Learn and share with other groups running a rural community building by joining our closed peer support Facebook group for community buildings and village halls.
The group is for trustees of rural community buildings across Yorkshire to share their thoughts, actions and questions on all aspects of community buildings and village hall management. You will need a Facebook account to participate.
One to one support
If you feel that you need more bespoke support to improve safeguarding in your community building you can submit a New Enquiry Form on the Community First Yorkshire website and one of our team of development officers will be happy to help. We can provide telephone and email support to help you with the following:
- Understanding your safeguarding responsibilities.
- Developing safeguarding policies and procedures.
- Building safeguarding into existing policies.
- Communicating safeguarding to others.
If you employ staff or have volunteers who require Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks we offer a secure and efficient service that does more than just process your applications.
We provide a friendly yet professional service guiding you every step of the way through the application process, with every regard for confidentiality and security.
We provide guidance on the law and what you need to do; offer training on best practices including refresher training; provide all customers with a comprehensive resource pack; and check, countersign and track your applications for you. All of this comes at a competitive price from a team that has been delivering checking support services to voluntary organisations large and small for over ten years.
Contact us on 01904 704177 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Find your local contact
Here is a list of useful website links for accessing information on safeguarding for both children and adults at risk.
Each link includes information on how to minimise the risk of abuse, how to spot the signs of potential abuse and how to report any safeguarding concerns you may have.
North Yorkshire County Council.
Accessing safeguarding information and guidance
ACRE promotion of good safeguarding practice to village and community halls throughout England – an explanation of the work ACRE is leading to promote good safeguarding practice.
NCVO Safeguarding information Includes resources to help you understand what safeguarding means and take steps to make your organisation safer.
NSPCC Child protection guidance for voluntary and community groups resources for those just starting out or reviewing existing processes.
NSPCC Safeguarding concerns: practice example – hiring out space – examples of common safeguarding scenarios and practical advice about how to respond to help you keep children safe. Includes an example specifically discussing the hiring out of space. The NSPCC has also created a guest podcast with The Village Halls Podcast on how to safeguard children in village halls.
Ann Craft Trust Safeguarding guidance for disabled children and adults at risk – resources to assist in achieving best practice in safeguarding disabled children and adults at risk.
Guidance on reporting safeguarding concerns in a charity – This tool will help charities in England to handle the reporting of safeguarding allegations about the behaviour or actions of a person in their charity.
Government statutory guidance, definitions, and responsibilities – every organisation that delivers charitable activities has a responsibility to safeguard people from harm or abuse, whether they are staff members, volunteers, or other people who come into contact with your charity through its work. This guidance provides a general overview of all aspects of safeguarding.
Policies and procedures documents
Here are some documents we have compiled which you may find useful when compiling safeguarding policies and procedures. Each document should be carefully reviewed and tailored to meet the specific needs of your organisation.
Poster listing children’s safeguarding contacts for display in your building.
Children’s safeguarding policy.
Children’s safeguarding procedure.
North Yorkshire Safeguarding Adults Board has produced this guidance on the development of safeguarding adults policies and procedures.
It provides recommended content and a suggested structure for a safeguarding policy and procedure.
Each organisation will however be different and will need to use this guidance to create a policy and procedure that reflects the needs of their organisation and their service users.
Adults safeguarding procedure.
Adults safeguarding policy.