Safeguarding is at the heart of the Christian faith and we take our responsibility to safeguard the welfare of all those with whom the church comes into contact very seriously.
Withycombe Raleigh Parochial Church Council is committed to acting within current legislation, guidance, national frameworks and the Diocesan Safeguarding procedures. We will also work in partnership with the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser, Children and Adult Social Care Services, the Police, Probation Services and other agencies to safeguard children and vulnerable adults.
We will endeavour to promote a safe environment and support, nurture, protect and safeguard all within our church communities, especially the young and the vulnerable, in a responsible and caring way.
To ensure this:
We have a safeguarding policy for Adults at Risk and Children and Young People. We have also customised a few additional policies (as recommended by the Diocese of Exeter) that cover other aspects of safeguarding. These policies are reviewed annually.
Safeguarding is an agenda item at every PCC meeting and the Safeguarding Committee (comprising of the Parish Safeguarding Representative and a link person from each of the three churches) meets regularly to discuss, monitor and evaluate the use of the policies, procedures and practice. All churchwardens and other PCC members are DBS checked and all PCC members have undertaken safeguarding training. The General Purposes Committee of each church has also received training.
We welcome staff and volunteers who are recruited in accordance with Safer Recruitment guidance. This means we will ensure that those who are employed or who volunteer to work with children, young people and vulnerable adults are suitable for the role, that they have a role description to know what the position entails (including any safeguarding responsibility) and that they are supported in carrying it out. Where a role is eligible, a DBS check will be undertaken, references taken up and relevant training offered.
Records are kept of those who have applied for Disclosure and Barring Service clearance and this is renewed every 5 years in line with Diocesan policy.
Anyone in a leadership role or working with adults at risk or children and young people is expected to undertake safeguarding awareness training, at the appropriate level. Records are kept and refresher training should be undertaken every 3 years.
Together with the safeguarding policies, the names of those with safeguarding responsibility are displayed on the notice boards at St. John the Evangelist Church, All Saints Church and St. John in the Wilderness Church.
Further information about safeguarding and resources can be found on the Diocesan website:
If you have any concerns about your own well-being or that of an individual, the following agencies may be contacted:
Concerns about Children – Devon MASH (Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub) – 0345 155 1071
Concerns about Adults – Devon – Care Direct – 0345 155 1007
Domestic Abuse – Devon helpline for professionals and individuals – 0345 155 1074
Rape Crisis – Devon – 0808 802 9999
Dear Lord, may we not be found wanting should a problem arise. By your Holy Spirit, enable us to show kindness, compassion, common sense and responsibility so that people of all ages and abilities are safe, feel cherished and may unfold as Children of God. Amen.