If this group is part of a parish fundraising event, then the guidelines for safeguarding need to be followed as it is ‘relevant and regular contact’, such as leaders / helpers being vetted, activity consent forms for parents to be signed ( form 1.4 A). However, if all parents are with the children always, then only leaders need to be vetted.
If the event is non- parish but use the parish hall or church, then all they need is to complete the renting of parish facilities form 1.5A. and will need insurance and a child safeguarding policy.
We have introduced the month of October as Safeguarding month, this year it was a new concept this year, however next year we will ask parishes to be more proactive in spreading the safeguarding messages for the Church. We have asked for safeguarding to go into parish newsletters along with new posters, leaflets and safeguarding policy sent out to all parishes over the summer, these should be displayed and available within the Church, Parish Offices and halls. The Diocesan website has a safeguarding tab with information on it. An idea was muted re using local media, I will take this idea to the safeguarding committee for discussion.
‘Do this in Memory’ is part of a Ministry within the Parish. Therefore, the parish are responsible for ensuring it is run in line with safeguarding. So, the parish will need to do the vetting. AS this is a form of Ministry.
In planning a trip or activity, it is critically important to consider how many adults are needed to supervise children in a safe manner. It is recommended that a certain number of adults be available to supervise a certain number of children; however, this is also dependent on whether the children have specific needs or requirements, and on the duration of the activity.
At a minimum, two adults are required for each activity.
In addition, the minimum following ratios should be applied, depending on the number of children:
If it is an overnight activity, additional staff/volunteers should be considered. If the group is mixed, a gender balance should be maintained.
Adult volunteers must have submitted the correct application form, obtained Garda vetting, taken part in induction and training appropriate to their role.
The government has approved legislation which will provide for the Children First Guidance to be statutorily underpinned. This legislation will apply to all organisations working with children including statutory, community and voluntary.