Safeguarding - everyone’s responsibility

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Click here to read information on the status of Community Action Norfolk's Services. As well as links to other information and advice
This website uses cookies. You can read more about how we use your personal data in our Privacy Notice

We provide governance, funding, management, training, and safeguarding advice and guidance to a wide variety of community organisations and voluntary groups, numbering in the hundreds. Especially now, during the Covid pandemic, we are supporting community-based mutual aid groups, in addition to our existing Good neighbour Network.  And awareness of safeguarding requirements – for volunteers, and service users of all ages and situations, is crucially important. Whether you are part of a spontaneous community response group or an established voluntary, community or social enterprise, you have a duty of care to those you are working with and to those in your community you are supporting. 

Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE) – of which CAN is a network member – was recently awarded funding from the National Lottery Community Fund to promote good safeguarding practice to village and community halls throughout England.  Read more here.

Individual awareness and responsibility 

Lone working 

You need to safeguard yourself if you are a volunteer, staff member or trustee. Ideally a lone working policy should be in place, but at the very least make sure someone knows where you are going and when they can expect you to report back to them that you have completed the task in hand and are safe. 

Being observant 

Have safeguarding in mind for yourself and others. Be vigilant and observant and if you suspect an issue, report it to your manager or co-ordinator, or to an approved authority (see below). 

Protecting personal information 

Warn your service users or clients not to give their personal information to others unless they are sure who is collecting it, why they are collecting it and what they intend to do with it. It’s OK to ask!.  

Electronic safeguarding 

Don’t open attachments or links in emails or on social media unless you are fully confident of the source. 


Organisational awareness and responsibility 

As a formally constituted voluntary, community or social enterprise organisation, you need to have insurance in place and check your policy covers you for what you are doing; consider your need to have professional indemnity and public liability insurance in place, as well as a safeguarding policy and procedure.  


Information, advice and reporting sources in Norfolk  

If you are suspicious or concerned about someone’s safety, ring Adult Social Services on 0344 800 8020. Or in an emergency call 999. Read more here.   Read about the work of Norfolk Safeguarding Adults Board’s work here  and Norfolk Safeguarding Children Partnership here


National information and guidance sources 

NCVO offers advice on creating a safe and welcoming environment, where everyone is respected and valued, stressing the importance of running an organisation in a way that prevents harm, harassment, bullying, abuse and neglect – and how to respond to it. Read more here.  

Every organisation that works with or comes into contact with children will have different needs for safeguarding and child protection. The NSPCC has particular advice about safeguarding issues, along with some helpful examples here

The Ann Craft Trust has a range of resources to help in safeguarding adults, young people, disabled and vulnerable people, and those participating in sport and similar activities. The advice includes information on how legislation applies in different circumstances, with particular attention to the Coronavirus pandemic. Find out more here.  

Government guidance for VCSE organisations on handling abuse allegations and complaints can be found here.