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Child Protection Guidance for all involved in sport

ClubsParents & CarersCoaches, Leaders & OfficialsChildren & Players

It is essential that sports clubs adopt good practice when dealing with young people and ensure that their safety is paramount. It is expected that all clubs show a positive commitment to proactive development and work towards established national kite mark/ accreditation scheme such as ClubMark or Seal of Approval (Rugby). Download our leaflet for clubs and organisations.

What should you have in place:

  • A Child Protection Policy
  • A Child Protection/Welfare Officer
  • Changing Room Procedures
  • Away Fixture Procedures
  • Guidance on Transportation
  • Consent for Photography and Videoing
  • Procedures for the recruitment and screening of staff and volunteers
  • A Code of Conduct
  • Appropriately qualified coaches and officials
  • A Health and Safety Policy
  • An Equity Statement

If you require further assistance in updating or developing your child protection policy and procedures, please refer to the specific guidance on the Child Protection in Sport Unit website.

It is essential that parents/carers have a general awareness of good practice and know what questions to ask of club personnel when looking for a suitable sporting environment for their child. Download our leaflet for parents and carers.

What you should ask:

About Coaches

  • Are they qualified?
  • Do they have access to appropriate training?
  • Are they suitable to work with children and young people?
  • Are they adequately insured?
  • What is the player/coach ratio?

About the club

  • Who do I tell if my child takes medication?
  • What happens if my child is involved in away fixtures?
  • Does the club have a child protection policy?
  • Does the club have a code of conduct?
  • What is the clubs policy on health and safety?

It is essential that sports coaches, leaders and officials adopt good practice when dealing with children and young people and ensure that their safety is paramount. It is good practice for coaches, leaders and officials to check and challenge their practice to ensure that they are operating in the most effective way. Download our leaflet for Coaches, Leaders and officials.

What you should ask yourself and expect to be asked:

  • Do you have appropriate up to date qualifications?
  • Do you have access to the most up to date training and do you take responsibility for your continuous professional development?
  • Do you have valid Insurance cover?

About your sessions:

  • Do you know your participants?
  • Are you working in a safe environment and using appropriate equipment?
  • Are you working within recommended coach/player ratios?
  • Are your activities appropriate for the age and skill level of participants?
  • What are your coaching outcomes and have you planned effectively?
  • Do you know what to do in case of an incident, accident allegation or disclosure?

Do you know if the club/environment within which you are working has the following in place?

  • A Child Protection Policy
  • A Coaches Code of Conduct
  • A Health and Safety Policy
  • Risk Assessment templates
  • An Equity Policy

When you take part in sport, you have the right to have fun and stay safe.  Don't let anyone spoil it!
Download our Have Fun & Stay Safe in Sport guidelines on what you and your coach need to do to have fun and stay safe.

What you should do:

  • Play your best at all times
  • Always ensure you play fairly
  • Use polite language at all times
  • Never bully others
  • Always treat others the way in which you would wish to be treated
  • Understand that you should do what your coach asks you to do - as long as you feel comfortable to do so and it is within the rules of the game
  • Always be on time and be prepared for competitions, events and coaching sessions

What your coach should do:

  • Have the right qualifications for the job
  • Not bully you to make you do things you're uncomfortable with
  • Treat you as an individual
  • Put your personal needs before winning
  • Never speak to you in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable
  • Make sure the equipment is safe for you to use
  • Be a good role model
  • Make sport fun!

SHIOW Contact

Sophie Burton
Sports Development Manager
01962 676373

Local Contacts

National Contacts