Sport Ireland has recently changed the structure of Child Welfare & Protection (Code of Ethics) workshops for Clubs. The details of the three stages of training are outlined here as follows:
All Coaches, Children’s Officers and Designated Liaison Persons (DLP) must first complete the 3 hour Child Welfare & Protection Basic Awareness Course. This course educates participants on the implementation of best practice in protecting the welfare of children involved in sport.
A person appointed to the Club Children’s Officer position in a club must have completed safeguarding 1 (Child Welfare & Protection Basic Awareness workshop) and should complete the NEW Club Children’s Officer 3 hour workshop. This course will help the Club Children’s Officer to carry out the function of their role in the club and support the implementation of best practice in the club. Participants will also receive a Club Children’s Officer Action Planning document as part of the training.
A person appointed to the Designated Liaison Person position in a club must have completed the Child Welfare & Protection Basic Awareness Course and should complete the NEW Designated Liaison Person 3 hour workshop. A club may appoint the same person to both the CCO and DLP positions however best practice advises that they are kept as separate roles.
Every club/organisation should designate a person to be responsible for dealing with any concerns about the protection of children. The Designated Liaison Person is responsible for reporting allegations or suspicions of child abuse to TULSA Child and Family Agency or Social Services (NI) and/or An Garda Siochán / PSNI. It is recommended that this person is a senior club person. However, if there is difficulty identifying a separate individual to take this role, the Club Children’s Officer can be appointed as Designated Liaison Person once the club/organisation is clear about the responsibilities of each role. The organisation’s child protection policy and procedures should include the name and contact details of the Designated Liaison Person and the responsibilities attached to the role.
Club Children’s Officers should be child centred in focus and have as the primary aim the establishment of a child centred ethos within the club. S/he is the link between the children and the adults in the club. S/he also takes responsibility for monitoring and reporting to the Club Management Committee on how club policy impacts on young people and Sports Leaders