Safeguarding Children & Adults when Volunteering in North Yorkshire
As a volunteer your role is vital in supporting local communities.
You may become aware of things which concern you or don’t feel right. If you have concerns we want you to know what to do and where to go for help
Safeguarding and the types of abuse
The signs of abuse aren’t always obvious, and a person may feel scared or unable to say what is happening to them.
Types of abuse for children and adults include:
Abuse and safeguarding concerns can include (but is not limited to):
- Child neglect
- Neglect/acts of omission
- Domestic abuse
- Coercive control
- Alcohol and/or drug use
- Online abuse
- Modern slavery
- Exploitation including sexual and criminal
Signs of abuse or neglect may include:
- Children looking dirty or always wearing the same clothes
- Children left home alone or outdoors by themselves
- Untidy living conditions which may pose a risk to health or may endanger the person or others
- People being locked in their house without a key or means of leaving
- Aggressive behaviour, discriminatory speech and shouting
- Someone saying that a relative, neighbour, friend or someone else has just taken all of their money or emptied their cupboards of food
These are not the only potential signs of abuse.
Safeguarding children and adults
Safeguarding is everybody’s business. Say something if you are concerned about a child, young person or an adult.
If you think a person’s life is in immediate danger you should contact the police on 999.
If you are worried about a child or adult you should:
- Discuss your concern with your Manager/Coordinator, or
- Contact the North Yorkshire Customer Service Centre on 0300 131 2 131.
Speak to your Manager/Coordinator if:
- You see a volunteer being given money or gifts from a resident, or
- If a resident is being offensive towards you or another volunteer
- Remember your boundaries
- Use your key contacts (make a note or put them in your phone)
- Report your concerns to your Manager/Coordinator or to the North Yorkshire Council Customer Service Centre
- Investigate your concerns
- Manage challenging situations or other people’s anxieties
- Take home any concerns
Wellbeing is important for everyone
Don’t forget your own wellbeing and speak to your Manager/Coordinator if you feel you are in need of support.