Message from Geoffrey Ocen, Chief Executive, The Bridge Renewal Trust

The Community and Voluntary sector has a vital role to play in the work of the Haringey Safeguarding Children’s Partnership. Community and Voluntary agencies, as well as faith organisations, are often the first point of contact for local families, children and young people needing help and support. The voluntary sector, therefore, is extremely well-placed to make early assessments of need, make early interventions and undertake preventative work. Voluntary organisations are also able to play an advocacy role, enabling and supporting families and children to access and understand statutory services.

We all have a responsibility to help keep children safe. All organisations working with children and young people must have safeguarding policies and procedures in place and be able to respond to child protection concerns. However, it is understandable that it's not always easy to know exactly what you need to do. As well as providing protection for individuals, voluntary organisations have a responsibility to safeguard their own reputation. It is therefore vital that they establish robust policies that are kept in constant review. It is important to carry out regular reviews of all safeguarding processes, to ensure they are in line with current and best practice.

That's why we are delighted that the Haringey Safeguarding Children’s Partnership has produced a ‘Green book’ for voluntary and community groups in Haringey. Whether you're just starting out or you're reviewing existing processes, the HSCP can provide help.
If you work with children and young people in a local community group or organisation you need to make sure that you have the following things in place for staff and volunteers:

•Child Protection training;
•DBS (formerly CRB) checks;
• Safeguarding Policies and Procedures.

Organisations that do not currently have their own policies and procedures can use this document to create their own or can adopt this Green Book as their policy and procedures. By adopting these procedures, your organisation agrees to be committed to implementing these procedures so that everyone understands and accepts their responsibilities to safeguard children from harm and abuse.

A copy of the Green Book is available here