Welfare and Safeguarding Policy

General policy statement

1.      Matchfit treats welfare and safeguarding issues very seriously.  We follow the ECB’s safeguarding policy for children’s participation in cricket “Safe Hands”: see https://www.ecb.co.uk/safeguarding/policy-and-procedures.  In accordance with that policy we seek to ensure that all times that:

·         the welfare and interests of children are paramount

·         all children have a positive experience of Matchfit activities, regardless of age, ability or disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation or socio-economic background

·         all children are protected from abuse of any kind whilst participating in Matchfit activities

·         Matchfit coaches are appropriately recruited and vetted, and provided with appropriate safeguarding training

·         Matchfit coaches have a responsibility for safeguarding and are familiar with how Safe Hands applies to them

·         procedures are in place to ensure that any safeguarding concerns can be readily and confidentially reported at the appropriate level

·         all suspicions, concerns and allegations are taken seriously and dealt with and managed swiftly and appropriately.

2.      Safe Hands contains comprehensive rules and guidance dealing with many different subjects and circumstances and it is our default policy.  However, we set out below our policies on certain specific issues which we regard as particularly important to Matchfit’s activities and operations.

3.      Details of persons to contact in the event of a safeguarding concern are set out at the end of this document.

First aid and medical information

4.      At least one trained first-aider will be present for all Matchfit coaching sessions and a First Aid Kit will always be available.

5.      Any relevant medical information which Matchfit ought to know about a child should be provided to Matchfit by his or her parent/guardian on registration, and that information will always be available to coaches during coaching sessions, though will otherwise be kept confidential.  In addition to the contact details of the parent/guardian, an emergency contact should also be provided on registration.

6.      If a child suffers an injury or other significant health issue during a coaching session and his or her parent/guardian is not present, attempts will be made immediately to contact (a) the parent/guardian, and (b) if they cannot be contacted, the alternative contact.  If neither can be contacted, or in an emergency situation, the trained first-aider may administer such first aid as they deem necessary, acting in loco parentis.

7.      Matchfit keeps an accident report book, and any significant incident will be recorded in that book and retained in accordance with standard safeguarding procedures.

Concussion

8.      Matchfit follows the guidance issued by the ECB in relation to concussion. Concussion is a complex and potentially significant brain injury which must be taken seriously.  Although coaches will take reasonable steps to ensure that safety guidance is followed at all times, ultimately it is the responsibility of parents/guardians and/or carers to ensure that they are fully informed on current ECB concussion guidelines: see www.ecb.co.uk/concussion.  It is our policy that all suspected concussions must be checked by a medical professional at A&E or with a GP immediately.

Anti-bullying policy

9.      Matchfit is committed to providing a friendly and safe environment for all those participating in its coaching sessions of any kind.  All those involved in such sessions are expected to treat each other with respect and bullying will not be tolerated. If bullying does occur, incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively.

10.  In accordance with our general policy statement, we will be particularly astute to detect and prevent any bullying based on age, ability or disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation or socio-economic background.

11.  We recognise that bullying can take many different forms (including amongst children, between staff and children, face to face, in verbal or physical form and/or by cyber bullying methods), none of which should be tolerated.  However, we also recognised that all children have disagreements with each other, friends sometimes fall out for a time, and children sometimes engage in banter which (provided it stays the right side of the line) should not be treated as bullying.  A degree of common sense is required in distinguishing between these different circumstances and we will always seek to apply this.

12.  If bullying is happening without our knowledge, we want to know about it and it should be reported in the same way as any other safeguarding concern: see below.

Photography and videoing

13.  Photography and/or videoing of participants in Matchfit sessions may take place for certain purposes and in certain circumstances as set out in paragraphs 11 to 14 of our General Terms and Conditions.

14.  Photography and/or videoing of children is an area of particular sensitivity and potential concern for safeguarding reasons and accordingly those rules must be strictly followed.

15.  Any concerns about inappropriate use of photographs or video recordings, or about intrusive photography or video recording, should be reported to in the same way as any other safeguarding concern: see below.

Reporting concerns

16.  Any welfare or safeguarding concern in relation to a particular session should, in general, be reported first to the coach in charge of the relevant session.

17.  If the concern does not arise out of a particular session, or if the concern arises out of the behaviour of the coach in charge of the session, it should be reported in the first instance to Matchfit’s welfare supervisor, Nick Harrison, on 01483 890800 or at nharrison@serlecourt.co.uk.

18.  If a concern is one which you would prefer to raise with a welfare supervisor unconnected with Matchfit, it should be reported to the Welfare Officer for Blackheath CC, Alexandra Jones on 01483 892860 or at blackheathalex@gmail.com.

19.  If the matter is urgent, contact the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000 or the police if the child is in immediate danger.

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