It is required that every club with underage and vulnerable players involved follows Sport Ireland guidelines and requirements on Child Welfare. These requirements are not only for clubs with youth sections, but also for those clubs with young players within their adult teams.
- Safeguarding Policy, which includes photography and media policy, recruitment policy, garda vetting policy, Procedure for dealing with allegations, procedures and role of the Club Children’s Officer and Designated Liaison Person – Download template clicking here
- Code of Conduct for players, parents, coaches and leaders – Download template clicking here (in appendix)
- Safeguarding Risk Assessment – Download template clicking here
- Child Safety Statement – Download template clicking here
- Safeguarding training and garda vetting for leaders working with young people
- Appoint Club Children’s Officer and Designated Liaison Person
“Under the terms of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts, 2012-2016 (“the Acts”), all persons who are employed in positions where they have regular access to children and vulnerable persons must be vetted by the National Vetting Bureau. Section 21 of the Acts provides that it is an offence for an employer to employ a person who works with children or vulnerable persons where an application for vetting has not been submitted to the National Vetting Bureau for that person by 31 December 2017.”
More info on Garda Vetting and applications here.
People working with underage and vulnerable people must undergo Safeguarding training, in particular Safeguarding 1. This training is provided by NGBs, Local Sport Partnership and other community initiatives. They are usually 20€ each and are mostly run online. Check out the website of your local LSP or VLY. Safeguarding page to find out when the next course will be.
Safeguarding 1 -Code of Ethics Basic Awareness/Child Protection Workshop (3 hrs)
This workshop is for the benefit of everyone involved in children’s sport (children, parents/guardians, sports leaders’, etc). It provides introductory information on codes of conduct, bullying, recruitment, etc. as well as child protection guidelines. By following the principles, policy and practical guidelines contained in the Code, sports leaders are playing their part in providing a safe and enjoyableenvironment in which children can learn and thrive.
Safeguarding 2 –Club Children’s Officer Workshop (3 hrs)
A person appointed to the Club Children’s Officer position in a club must have completed the Child Welfare & Protection Basic Awareness workshop and should complete the NEW Club Children’s Officer 3 hour Training Course. This course will help the Club Children’s Officer to carry out the function of their role in the club and support the implementation of best practice in the club. Participants will also receive a Club Children’s Officer Action Planning document as part of the training.
Safeguarding 3 –Designated Liaison Person Workshop (3hrs)
The Designated Liaison Person is responsible for reporting allegations or suspicions of child abuse to TUSLA Child and Family Agency or Social Services (NI) and/or An Garda Siochána / PSNI. It is recommended that this person is a senior club person. However, if there is difficulty identifying a separate individual to take this role, the Club Children’s Officer can be appointed as Designated Liaison Person once the club/organisation is clear about the responsibilities of each role. The organisation’s child protection policy and procedures should include the name and contact details of the Designated Liaison Person and the responsibilities attached to the role.
Club Children's Officer
Club Children’s Officer (CCO) is appointed as a committee member within a club. The CCO will act as a resource to the committee for any decisions that will affect its young members and to represent them at committee level. The CCO will listen and look out for any concerns that young persons may have and raise concerns to the stator authorities when necessary.
The CCO must be appointed every year and is trained with Safeguarding 1 and 2 courses.
Find a full description of the CCO here
Designated Liaison Person
This role is undertaken by a committee member. The CCO can be the DLP as well but must ensure they are aware of both roles and responsibilities. The DLP is responsible for reporting allegations/suspicions of child abuse to the statutory authorities. This person is also responsible for dealing with any concerns about protection of young people.
The DLP must be appointed every year and is trained with Safeguarding 1 and 3 courses.
Find a full description of the DLP here