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Safeguarding Policy Statement 

“Everyone who works with children has a responsibility for keeping them safe. No single practitioner can have a full picture of a child’s needs and circumstances and, if children and families are to receive the right help at the right time, everyone who comes into contact with them has a role to play in identifying concerns, sharing information and taking prompt action.” Working Together to Safeguard Children, 2018

1. The Purpose of this Safeguarding Policy Statement

Shakespeare Walk Adventure Playground (SWAPA)’s aim is to improve children and young people’s health, well-being and quality of life through play. We provide play and youth services for children and young people in Hackney and we support the Hackney Play Streets project.

The purpose of this policy statement is:

  • to protect children and young people who take part in SWAPA’s services

  • to provide parents, staff and volunteers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to safeguarding, supporting and promoting children’s welfare.

This policy applies to everyone who works or volunteers for SWAPA in any capacity and in any setting – all trustees, staff (employed, self-employed, full time, part time, casual, subcontractors) and volunteers.

This policy applies to all children and young people aged 0 to 18 (or up to 25 for young people with special educational needs, disabilities or leaving care).

SWAPA’s core age range for open access play and youth services is for children and young people aged 6 to 16 and (or aged up to 19 for young people with special educational needs, disabilities or leaving care, who must be accompanied and supervised by a parent at all times).

We also welcome younger children, who must be accompanied and supervised by a parent at all times. Older young people may participate as volunteers.

2. The Legal Framework

This policy has been drawn up on the basis of legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect children in England. This includes:

  • The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, including the child’s rights to play, health and well-being and the right to protection from all forms of violence, abuse, maltreatment or neglect.

  • The Children Acts 1989 and 2004 and Working together 2018 provide the legal framework for the care and protection of children and young people, and also for open access play provision, in England.

Other relevant legislation includes:

  • General Data Protection Regulations 2018

  • Children and Social Work Act 2017

  • Children and Families Act 2014

  • SEND Code of practice: 0-25 years 2014

  • Protection of Freedoms Act 2012

  • Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006

  • Sexual Offences Act 2003

  • Human Rights Act 1998

Key Guidance includes:

More information on the key legislation and guidance is available from

3. Our Aims and Beliefs

A child-centred approach to promoting welfare

We aim to:

  • deliver high quality play services that are responsive to children and young people’s needs, wishes and feelings, through our playwork practice, supported by our staff training programme and through implementation of our policies and procedures.

  • have a child-centred, with the needs and wishes of each child and young person central to what we do in both our playwork and our safeguarding practice.

  • support a culture of listening to children, observing, respecting and responding sensitively and swiftly.

We believe that:

  • the welfare of the child/young person is paramount

  • a child or young person should never experience abuse or neglect of any kind – it is always unacceptable, without exception

We recognise that:

  • all children and young people, regardless of age, disability, gender identity, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity have the right to play and the right to protection from all types of harm and abuse

  • some groups of children may be more vulnerable to harm or exploitation because of disability, refugee status, looked after status, poverty and other social factors

  • we have a responsibility – trustees, staff and volunteers – to promote and safeguard the welfare of all children and young people by a commitment to practice that aims to keep children and young people safe from harm

  • we have a responsibility to work closely in partnership with children, young people, parents, carers and our partner agencies to promote children and young people’s welfare – respecting confidentiality but sharing information on a need to know basis. Our partner agencies include (but are not limited to) Hackney Council Children’s Services, Young Hackney, City & Hackney Safeguarding Children Board, the Police and other children and young people’s services in Hackney and England.

  • Designated safeguarding officer Sarah Wilson( Senior Playworker)

We will seek to keep children and young people safe from harm by:

  • valuing, listening to and respecting children and young people appointing a designated child protection/safeguarding lead, deputy child protection/safeguarding leads and a lead trustee/board member for safeguarding

  • developing child protection and safeguarding policies and procedures which reflect best practice using our safeguarding procedures to share concerns and relevant information with agencies who need to know, and involving children, young people, parents, families and carers
    appropriately, and maintaining a good working relationship with agencies charged with investigative responsibilities

  • creating and maintaining an anti-bullying environment and ensuring that we have a Behaviour policy and procedure to help us deal effectively with any bullying that does arise developing and implementing an effective online safety policy and related procedures
    sharing information about child protection and safeguarding best practice with children, their families, staff and volunteers via leaflets, posters, group work and one-to-one discussions recruiting staff and volunteers safely, ensuring all necessary checks are made providing effective management for staff and volunteers through induction, supervision, support, clear lines of reporting, policies and procedures, quality assurance and training for staff, volunteers and trustees

  • implementing a code of conduct for staff and volunteers using our procedures to manage any allegations against staff and volunteers appropriately ensuring that we have effective complaints and whistleblowing measures in place

  • ensuring that we provide a safe physical environment for our children, young people, staff and volunteers, by applying health and safety measures in accordance with the law and regulatory guidance.

  • recording and storing information professionally and securely.

4. Related Policies and Procedures


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