The importance of contextual safeguarding

Finding time for my own CPD is always a challenge when there is so much to do. I set aside this morning to review the notes I had made and the handout from the NSPCC Designated Safeguarding Officer training which I attended in December. I always find it really useful to revisit my notes, a few months on and reflect on learning.

I think the thing which has stuck with me most from this course, is the importance of contextual safeguarding. It is easy to look at a child or young person and not consider the wider context within which they are living and facing life's challenges. I suppose we are getting better sometimes at thinking about the influences on young people - the radicalisation agenda has perhaps opened our eyes to this...

However, this course and the follow on work I have done, coupled with discussions with clients has begun to make me think in much more depth about this. For example, I work with a local community cafe - at one time my focus of this work would have been food safety, health and safety, first aid. Those are all still important, but equally so is the role which a community venue like this might have in safeguarding children, young people and adults at risk. My research and thinking is backed up by the fact that I get many more enquiries for training these days from a very wide range of organisations - not just those who 'traditionally' work with groups we might consider vulnerable.

So, whatever your role, I would challenge you to consider your organisation's part in the wider safeguarding agenda - and as always, contact me if I can be of any assistance.

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