When choosing a sports club/provider or activity for your child, it’s important to first check whether the club or organisation has achieved an up-to-date sports body or local council accreditation (such as Clubmark).
If so, then this can be viewed as evidence that the club or organisation has attained a certain level of safe practices as assessed by the awarding body. The Club Matters portal provides a list of all Clubmark-accredited clubs and is a good starting point for finding a club
Even if a club is accredited, you should check that the organisation has:
- A safeguarding policy, with a clear procedure for dealing with concerns or risks of abuse. You should be advised how you can access the policy
- A named and contactable welfare officer responsible for the implementation of their safeguarding policy and dealing with issues relating to the protection of children, young people or adults in sport
- Procedures for dealing with complaints or concerns regarding poor practice, abuse or neglect
- Written standards of good practice, such as a code of conduct or behaviour
- A parental consent and emergency details form that you must return to the club or activity provider
- Safe recruitment procedures for those working with young people that include a clear job description, appropriate references, criminal records checks (e.g. DBS) for relevant posts and technical qualifications
- Access to appropriate safeguarding or child protection training for its staff and volunteers.