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 SUMMER 2024

Over the summer holidays you may be organising additional activities for children  or come into contact with children  more regularly. There are some excellent NSPCC resources that  will help you to create robust safeguarding policies and understand what to do if you have any concerns. Some of the posters in the section " signpost to childline" are also in Welsh. This content is copied from the NSPCC website. 

Group of adults working on a laptop.

Assess your safeguarding policies
If you are part of a voluntary or community group, have you checked your safeguarding policies recently? Use our free audit tool to identify areas for development and access further resources to help make any changes. Make sure your safeguarding policies and practices are robust for the holidays.

Sign up now


Adult and child sitting on sofas and talking to each other.

Signpost to Childline
Spruce up your workplace with our range of posters encouraging children to contact Childline if they need to talk. Available in both English and Welsh and for primary school age children through to young people under 18. You can also download our Helpline posters for staff rooms.

Download posters


Text: You can refer a child who needs support today. Photo: Child on a laptop.

Help young people tackle loneliness
The summer holidays can be difficult for young people who may not see friends or struggle to maintain relationships with peers. Building Connections helps young people up to the age of 19 through an online text-based programme, with the support of a trained befriender. Find out more about the service and how you can make a referral.

Find out more


Adult writing in a notepad

Managing allegations of abuse
It's essential that you respond appropriately to all allegations and concerns, no matter where the alleged incident took place. Read our guidance to understand how to deal with allegations of abuse against a staff member, volunteer, child or young person. If you're ever not sure, contact our NSPCC Helpline for advice from our child protection specialists.

Learn more


 We are very pleased to announce that in partnership with Thirtyone:eight the Panel is now able to offer an out of hours service.

Churches from the three denominations can now contact the Thirtyone eight safeguarding helpline  on  0303 003 1111 during the following hours 

 5pm - midnight, 7am - 9am, Weekends and bank holidays and during safeguarding officer holidays 

For more information see the emergency contact or advice and support pages of our website 

 31 82


March 2024  Amendment to the Sexual offences act 2003

Following a campaign led by the NSPCC the loophole was closed in June 2022 to ensure that religious and sport roles are now categorised as Ppsitions of trust as has been the case for roles such as teachers and doctors . Many were shocked to realise that sports coaches and religious leaders were not already included in this legislation 

Section 22A of the Sexual offences Act 2003 was amended to include these additional postions of trust in sports and religious settings if they regularly coach, teach, train or supervise others.

This means that it is now against the law for someone in a position of trust to engage in sexual activity with a child in their care, even if that child is over the age of consent ( 16 or over) . 

 Appendix 3 of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Handbook has been amended to include this change in law. 

Autumn 2023

Calling all local church safeguarding coordinators.

If you've just taken on a safeguarding role in your local church - or thinking about it - or you've been doing this for a while - This new page on the panel website is just for you

You can find information on the role and some other useful links and resources  including this new leaflet :  I'M A CHURCH SAFEGUARDING COORDINATOR, what next...? to help you to understand your role and safeguarding responsibilities. 

There are also some new training sessions for Safeguarding Coordinators coming up  in 2024.  The first one is on 15/2/24 Local Church Safeguarding Coordinator Training    with more dates to follow. see Training (

 Remember you are not on your own and the Panel officers are there to help you in your role. 


Summer 2023

As the summer holidays start - Are you asking the important question " Is my child old enough to be home alone or go out alone" go to our useful information page to see advice from the NSPCC

June 2023   

Our new poster and leaflet

We are pleased to share our new poster  A4 here and also an  info card ( A6 - postcard size)  giving details of how to respond to a concern

You can get copies from the office or down load a copy following the links above. 

english only png                                leaflet 06 23 one page png



HOW ARE YOU DOING? More specifically how is your church doing in regard to safeguarding vulnerable groups? As we come to the end of the summer holidays  and start to think about getting ready for the new terms' activities in September - How about doing a safeguarding self assessment as part of your preparations? 

We have been working on some updates for the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Handbook for a while. They are currently at the printers and each church should be receiving their copy of the updates in the Autumn but here is a preview of one of the new additions.:  Appendix 10: The Safer Church - self assessment checklist          

It asks some important questions which will help you to assess how you are doing locally. Here are a few examples:

  • o Is everyone aware of your church’s safeguarding policies and procedures and where to find them?
  • o Are your trustees/leaders aware of their safeguarding responsibility?
  • o Do you follow safer recruitment guidelines when finding and employing volunteers and staff including DBS checks?
  • o Are you confident that leaders, staff and volunteers in your church are aware of their safeguarding role and responsibility? Have they attended appropriate training including refresher training?

There are also links which will lead you to more information and advice.

The checklist  is based on the interactive safeguarding checklist from the Ann Crafft Trust: We are very grateful to them for giving us permission to use this


This year, the Interdenominational Safeguarding Panel is encouraging you to join thousands of other churches across the UK to highlight the importance of protecting vulnerable people as part of Safeguarding Sunday, an  awareness-raising campaign initiated by the Christian safeguarding charity Thirtyone:eight.

This year’s Safeguarding Sunday campaign takes place on 20th November, (coinciding with the start of National Safeguarding Adults Week 21–27 November). If you can’t make that date, why not choose another Sunday, or use part of a service to raise awareness of safeguarding in your church. Last year, more than 2,000 churches took part in the event, with this year looking to be bigger than ever. 

How to get involved:

  1. You can visit our special website page Safeguarding Sunday ( for more information and download our resources in Welsh or English from mid September 2022 or get in touch with us if you would like more information or advice.
  2. You can register with and download a free resource pack to help you to  plan the event, including a range of activities for children.
  3. We would love to know if you are planning to take part in any Safeguarding Sunday activities.  please drop us a line to let us know:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  It will make our day!

Justin Humphreys, Joint Chief Executive at Thirtyone:eight, said: 

“While we can’t and shouldn’t ignore abuse that has happened within the Church, of which there has been plenty of media coverage, Safeguarding Sunday is a chance to shine a light on what so many churches are doing to make places of worship safer. We mustn’t forget that protecting vulnerable people is at the heart of the Christian message of justice and hope. I want to thank everyone who is doing this vital ongoing work and taking part in this year’s campaign to raise awareness of the importance of safeguarding in their church and community.”


January 2022 Training update:

We are moving towards a new model of training delivery, where a small team of volunteers from across Wales are trained to deliver basic safeguarding training to volunteers in local churches. This is an exciting development which we hope will increase the amount of training available.

Our volunteer trainers are currently receiving training themselves to ensure that the new training is consistent and of a high quality. We will be rolling out this programme in the coming months. Julie, our safeguarding and training officer will continue to deliver the staff and minister training and is overseeing this new project.  In the meantime, please contact the office with your requests for training as usual.  

DBS VERIFIERS TRAINING : A short 1 hour training session via ZOOM has been arranged on 14th September 2021 2- 3 pm to enable Ministers and Church safeguarding coordinators to verify DBS forms and check ID documentation locally.  Please contact the Panel office  to book your place or for more information. 

May 2021


Further to the statement in January 2021 - It is now possible to resume face-to-face verification with appropriate safeguards in place ( masks/ hand hygiene/ gel / outdoors).  As some churches are now opening and have completed a covid-19 risk assessment, it may also be possible to meet inside, with the church's permission, but following social distancing rules.

Verifiers who are clinically extremely vulnerable from coronavirus (previously known as 'shielding') or do not wish to meet applicants face to face will not be expected to do this. Other options are available - please contact the office.

Please contact the office if you have any concerns or queries.


February 2021

We now have a search facility on our website to help you to find the infomation you need. 

January 2021


Verifying forms has become more difficult due to Covid 19 restrictiions and no-one should break any safety rules or put themselves or others at risk during the ID checking process.


The DBS has made temporary changes to its ID checking guidelines to enable  checking over video conferencing or the use of scanned documents.  However the original documents still need to be shown as soon as possible.

Contact the Panel Office for more information

We expect that when restrictions are relaxed we may be able to resume face to face verification with appropriate safeguards in place ( masks/ hand hygiene/ gel / outdoors).  No verifier who is shielding or does not wish to meet applicants face to face will be expected to do this.

During this time we are prioritising first time DBS checks and no-one should begin direct work without a valid check.

December 2020

Individual church safeguarding policy statement 

We are pleased to share this new church policy statement to enable you to clearly state your church’s commitment to safeguarding vulnerable groups. 
Up until now the policy statement was to be found at the beginning of both Section 3 (Childlren) and Section 4 (adults) in the handbook.
We have now produced a separate document which will enable you to share and to display it more easily.
 You can find the document  in the policy  section of our webisite as a PDF or as a word document so you can add your own logo etc. 

New for 2020 - flowcharts and examples to help you to know who should do a DBS check click here



July 2020

Virtual work with young people information sheet and risk assessment

If you are working virtually with young people during this difficult season, r this leaflet gives some useful advice and includes anexample risk assessment. This will help you to to work in the safest way possible, consider all aspects of the activity and to make sure that appropriate safeguards are in place to protect all parties. This specifically refers to young people but may be helpful for all age virtual activities.

 20th March 2020

Corona Virus COVID-19 Protection Panel Notice

Sian and Julie will not be regularly in the office after today but will be working from home. We will be checking emails,  messages on the office phone (01745 817584) and mobile 07957510346. Please don't use these numbers for emergencies as we can't guarantee they will be picked up straight away.

All DBS forms and certificates that have reached the office by today have been processed but we cannot guarantee that DBS forms arriving at the office from 21st March onwards will be sent on to the DBS straight away or that a certificate will be returnedto you  as quickly as usual.
If you are planning on starting volunteering in this emergency please show your certifcate to your leader rather than send it to the office. (We will still need to see them eventually).

ADVICE AND SUPPORT This is a time where people are pulling together and showing incredible signs of altruism and care within our communities. It is also a time when people are under increasing strain and are very anxious and our vulnerable groups may be even more at risk of abuse and neglect due to increased isolation and need. Please remember there is help and advice available from many experienced and specialised organisations. There are some sources of support here ttp:// and also the Samaritans are available to offer advice and help to those who are struggling.

VISITING AND COMMUNITY SUPPORT I certainly dont want to undermine or undervalue the many demonstrations of incredible kindness that are being seen all around us but ask you to remember basic safeguarding principles. Although these principles apply to most community support activity with the vulnerable, from the Panel perspectice this is particularly aimed at any activities done in the name of the church rather that between friends or neighbours.

Please ensure that:

  • Activities are carefully planned and accountable. Make sure you have local guidelines and procedures to protect everyone (e.g. Church leader/ elder/ deacon is aware of the planned visits and any concerns are reported back)
  • You listen to people and treat them with dignity and respect
  • You respond to concerns and reports of abuse. (Even if it is hard to believe or the victim asks you to keep it quiet or a secret.)
  • An ethos of transparency and openness is promoted where all feel free to ask for help.
  • Always be mindful of your own safety
  • Follow current government health guidelines and take all possible steps to avoid transmitting the virus.e.g handwashing and self isolation when you or those you live with have any symptoms whatsoever.

Even at this time of national crisis we do have to remember that abuse can happen and many are even more at risk due to increased isolation. If you have concerns even if it is hard to believe be prepared to: RECOGNISE that abuse may be happening RESPOND by RECORDING your concerns and REPORT to the Police or Social Services.
See also

Please remind those who may be receiving visits:

  • That they should not allow strangers into their homes, even if they claim to be part of a Community Support Scheme. Check with the scheme first (not using the phone number supplied by your ‘visitor’)
  • To be wise when paying for shopping. Don’t pay a stranger or new person in advance and try to use electronic banking wherever possible.

With our kind regards and thanks for all your hard work and kindness
Julie and Sian

Please also refer to specific guidelines on the 3 denomination websites.


Read the DBS safeguarding FAQ and factsheet for community volunteers during the covid 19 pandemic



Summer 2019

During the summer holiday season our office opening hours will be slightly different to usual due to staff holidays. we apologize for any inconvenience.
PleIn an Emergency: If you are concerned about an individual or situation please ring the Police or local social services department. You can also ring the Panel Safeguarding Officer on 07957510346 for advice (please do not use this number for DBS enquiries over Christmas).ase leave a message on our answerphone (01745 817584) or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and Sian or Julie will get back as soon as possible

In an Emergency: If you are concerned about an individual or situation please ring the Police or local Social Services department. For more helplines and sources of support go to the help and advice section of our website

Are you running a c hildrens holiday club this summer?

Activities such as Holiday Clubs for children under 12 years may need to be formally registered if they meet the criteria to be classed as regulated child care/day careRead this fact sheet and follow the links for more details.

Generally, activities for children over 12 or activities or those for under 12s provided for less than 2 hours per day or fewer than 6 days in a year do not need to be registered.
However you should still contact the Care Inspectorate Wales to inform them of the planned activity and to ensure that your club does not need to be registered.

It is an offence not to register a relevant activity



  December 2018

Julie and Sian and the Panel members and Directors wish you a very Happy Christmas and a Peaceful New Year. Thank you for working with us during 2018 to make our churches safer places. We look forward to working with and for you in 2019.

Please note that our offices will be closed over the Christmas period from 20th December 2018 til Monday 7th January.
In an Emergency: If you are concerned about an individual or situation please ring the Police or local social services department. You can also ring the Panel Safeguarding Officer on 07957510346 for advice (please do not use this number for DBS enquiries over Christmas).

July 2018

Home alone: A question I'm frequently asked during training sessions is " At what age can a child  legally be left alone"  People are usually surprised that there is no legal age as the maturity of children can vary so much , but parents can be prosecuted for neglect if it puts them at risk of injury or suffering.  This can be more of an issue during the long summer holidays - have a look at this NSPCC advice  if youre concerned about a child or if you are trying to assess if your child is ready to be left on their own.

This guide gives sound advice and useful tips to help parents decide in which situations they may leave their children home alone, and what they need to do to ensure their safety and wellbeing. 


June 2018

NEW DBS privacy notice May 2018: click here to read what the DBS do with your information. 


May 2018

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has published its Interim Report 

The Inquiry was required under its Terms of Reference to publish an Interim Report in 2018. This report fulfils that responsibility and provides an overview of the work undertaken by the Inquiry so far.

The Interim Report sets out what the Chair and Panel consider to be the key emerging themes from the Inquiry’s work to date and includes recommendations for specific changes which will better protect children from sexual abuse. 

You can read the report or executive summary here


April 2018

Charity Trustees and Safeguarding

We've updated the useful links section of our website to include the most recent Charity commission information about trustees and safeguarding

or read Annex 1 safeguarding and Trustees here 



Safeguarding Week 2017 Monday 13 November 2017

“Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility” – Huw Irranca-Davies

Everyone in society has a responsibility to protect and safeguard children and adults from abuse and neglect, Minister for Children and Social Care, Huw Irranca-Davies has said. link to article 



Health and social services13 November 2017Programme for Government - Healthcare

Launching National Safeguarding Week, the Minister said people who have suffered abuse and neglect are encouraged to come forward and share their experiences with the appropriate authorities, so that society learn and recognise the signs to prevent abuse happening in the future.

January 2017

Independant Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse The Inquiry has published a report on 16th December which shows the findings of their Internal Review and their intended work schedule for 2017/18.) click here to read

 Click here to learn more about the inquiry

Charities Commisison announces it will be revising its safeguarding strategy during 2016/17 

Safeguarding will also be a priority. The work of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse is likely to have significant implications for all charities working with children and vulnerable adults, and for public authorities including the Commission. We will be communicating safeguarding lessons to trustees and staff in charities and at the same time we will be refreshing our strategy on safeguarding through our expanded Safeguarding Advisory Group.


December 2016

 Sian and Julie would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and to thank you for your support and cooperation throughout 2016.

Please note our office is now closed until 3rd January 2017

If you have a query regarding a DBS application please contact us in January or send an email or leave a message on our answer machine and we will get back to you as soon as we can in the new year.

In an emergency or if you have concerns about an individual please refer to the advice and support page of our website for sources of support or click here

You can also leave a message for the Safeguarding Officer on her mobile 07957 510346  and she will get back to you as soon as possible.

Thank you 


















September 2015

Changes in DBS checks arrangements for the Baptist Union of Great Britain(BUGB) from November 2015


Some Baptist churches have received an email from Stephen Boyo of the Churches Agency for Safeguarding (CAS) advising them that responsibility for checks will be changing to Due Diligence from November.


Please note that this does not affect Baptist Union of Wales Churches. The Interdenominational Protection Panel remains responsible for processing your checks. If you are unsure or have any questions don't hesitate to contact us.


Thank you








Please click on the training tab to see details of our upcoming training sessions.


If you would like to arrange a session in your area please contact our office.






July 2014


To see a copy of the Poster " SAFEGUARDING EVERYONE" that corresponds with the new Safeguarding handbook click here


Please contact our office if you would like to recieve an A3 copy 


Leaflets are also available click here to see a copy and contact us if you would like to receive more.


June 2014


Review of workers/ volunteers with vulnerable groups


It is the current policy of the Presbyterian Church of Wales, Union of Welsh Independents and the Baptist Union of Wales to do a Disclosure and Barring Check (DBS) every 4 years for those who work with vulnerable children or adults. This process is carried out on behalf of the churches by the Interdenominational Protection Panel.


Unfortunately we have had a very poor response to invitations to individuals who were due for a 4 year re-check to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service form or to inform the Panel that they are no longer working with vulnerable groups.  At a recent meeting, the Interdenominational Protection Panel members agreed that we need to establish an up to date list of those who are actually working with vulnerable people within our churches to enable us to concentrate on providing the checks and training for the correct people. It was agreed that this review of workers and volunteers within each church should be carried out through each Presbytery/ Connexion/ Association as a matter of urgency to ensure that we are able to comply with our current policy and procedures to safeguard vulnerable individuals.


Thank you for your help


Please click the links to To download a copy of the letter to churches and the response form




January 2014


The Interdenominational Protection Panel has launched a new Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Handbook




This new handbook replaces “For the Sake of Our Children” and includes working with children, youth and vulnerable adults.


Its aim is to help churches from the Union of Welsh Independents, Baptist Union of Wales and the Presbyterian Church of Wales to recruit workers and volunteers and work with vulnerable groups in a safer manner.




Speech by Rhian Huw Williams, Chief Executive of the Care Council for Wales


Rhian Huws Williams had agreed to make a speech at the Launch of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Handbook in January 2014.


Unfortunately she was unable to attend on the day but we are grateful to her for allowing us to share her speech.  Here is an extract:-  


"We've moved on from the time we launched “For the Sake of Our Children”, when there was some concern that the chapels were going overboard. Now, hopefully there is a better understanding of the responsibility – as I said earlier - the responsibility to make sure that everyone who works in the name of chapels and churches is safe and suitable. No Messing! Also we need to ensure that we understand our responsibility for each other and those in our communities - that means an awareness of what the characteristics of vulnerable people are, how children and people are harmed and how we should respond."


Rhian Huw Williams For the full version of the Speech please click here