Steps to Becoming a Child Safe Club
Being child safe is a continuous process that requires feedback and review. The image to the right is an example of the steps you will take in your path to becoming a more child safe club.
If you need more information about the Child Safe Standards please visit our FAQ page by clicking here .
Please note this information provides general guidance regarding the Child Safe Standards. It should not be considered as a substitute for legal advice.
Step 1: Create a Child Safe taskforce!
No person is an island and no person can do this work on their own! Your first step is to think about who at your club could help contribute to this project. Remember this is going to take some time to achieve and it’s about making sure the whole club is involved.
We suggest approaching your board or committee to come up with a list of people for the taskforce. Consider including parents, admin staff, coaches and athletes. Anyone with experience in this area (like a teacher) could be really helpful. You should also think about making sure children & young people are represented on this taskforce or you can create a ‘sub-committee’ made up of athletes (under and over 18) to review the work and give their input.
Set a date for your first meeting and make sure you meet regularly after that. How often you need to meet will depend on how much there is to do but we would recommend at least once every 3 months.
Step 2: Get some help!
To start you on your child safe journey you will need a few things to guide you. GV suggests downloading and becoming familiar with the ‘Guide for Creating a Child Safe Organisation’ created by the Commission for Children and Young People. Read this guide and ensure all members of your taskforce have a copy too.
Step 3: Audit time!
Now you have a taskforce to help you and a better understanding of the standards it’s time to see how your club measures up. An audit is a great way to do this. It will help shape your action plan and give you an understanding of what the most important issues are at your club. Remember this audit is the first step to compliance so don’t worry if you’re not 100% straight away - most clubs will have a bit of work to do the first time they do this.
The audit will also take time depending on how much work there is to do. Most clubs just starting out on their child safe journey will need at least 12 months to get up to speed.
We recommend using the VicSport audit tool that GV has adapted (and filled with resources) or you can use the audit tool created by the Commission for Children & Young People. Once you have downloaded the audit you can get take it to your taskforce and start completing it together.
If you get stuck get it touch with Gymnastics Victoria and we'll help you out, contact [email protected].
GV Adapted VicSport Audit Tool
CCYP Audit Tool
Step 4: Including children & young people
If you don’t have input from children and young people on your taskforce it’s important to ensure their views are included in other ways.
This is important because children sometimes see safety differently from adults. It’s possible that you may miss some important safety considerations if you don’t consult the children & young people at your club. You also want to make sure that any new policies or procedures you implement are fair and supported by everyone.
You can include children & young people in a variety of ways e.g. setting up a youth committee, get feedback at the start of class, run a survey, send out policies to parents and young people for feedback, run a parent and child workshop where they can give feedback etc.
To help you incorporate children's views about safety GV has developed a mini activity you can easily get coaches or staff to run with children & young people at your club.
Example Safety Activity For Gymnasts
Once you have run this activity present the suggestions to the taskforce and incorporate them into your action plan.
Step 5: Action Plan
If you completed the audit tool you already have an action plan.
If you used the VicSport Audit your action plan will be items from these columns:
If you used the CCYP Audit your action plan will be items from these columns:
Write down everything you put in these columns with action items about how you are going to meet them, who is responsible and by when.
Make sure you prioritise the area’s that present the biggest risk to children at your club.
Now you have your action plan! Make sure you send it out to all your taskforce members and anyone else who has an action to complete.
Step 6: Implement
You have completed an audit, created an action plan, prioritise the work and are now ready to put everything in action! To assist you with some of the standards GV has created gymnastics specific resources.
Take a look at our resources page here.
Step 7: Regular Reviews
Once you have made your way through the action plan and implemented everything you are ready for a review. Remember Child Safety is not a checklist. It is a living breathing culture that needs to be constantly reviewed and improved upon.
Regular reviews (at least every 12 months or sooner if there is an incident) should be undertaken by the taskforce, committee of management. These reviews should involve everyone in your community (athletes, staff, volunteers, parents, management).
Congratulations on completing your first Child Safety Review!