Well done to those of you have offered to become and continue to be your Club’s Welfare Officer. You are obviously a good communicator, listener and educator within your Club but has anyone ever given you a copy of your roles and responsibilities?
If not, please take the time to look at this link: Roles and Responsibilities of a Club Welfare Officer.
The role is very involved and pivotal for the safe and effective running of your Club.
For the 2010/11 season onwards, all Clubs were required to have at least one Club Welfare officer who has a CRB or one in process and attended both the Safeguarding Children and Welfare Officer Workshops for your Club to be able to affiliate to the Essex County FA/ Suffolk FA. For larger Clubs, it is a good idea to have two Welfare Officers, but please note that only one Welfare Officer can be the Club Verifier. However, if you have two Welfare Officers, should one leave, the only thing that would need to be sorted out would be the verifying of CRB’s.
The Safeguarding Children Workshop is very informative and can be attended by any member of your Club (this includes all parents) in the football environment who would like to have a greater understanding of what is involved in ensuring the safety of all children. This should be renewed every three years.
Please note that the Welfare Officer Workshop is available for Welfare officers only to attend and before you can attend the Welfare Officer workshop, you must attend the Safeguarding Children Workshop first and have a enhanced FA CRB. Current guidelines from the FA are that unless you feel the need to update your knowledge or are requested to attend the Welfare Officer Workshop , once you have attended it, you don’t need to attend it again.
The only dates currently available for these courses which are held in the evening normally from 7-10pm at a cost of £20 / £25 are as follows:
Essex County FA
Safeguarding Children Workshop - £25.00
Colchester - SC001 - Monday 7th February - 7:00-10:00pm
Chelmsford - SC002 - Monday 14th March - 7:00-10:00pm
Collier Row - SC003 - Tuesday 29th March - 7:00-10:00pm
Chelmsford - SC004 - Tuesday 10th May - 7:00-10:00pm
Colchester - SC005 - Monday 23rd May - 7:00-10:00pm
Collier Row - SC006 - Wednesday 8th June - 7:00-10:00pm
Welfare Officer Workshop - £20
Collier Row - WOW004 - Tuesday 23rd November - 7:00-10:00pm
Chelmsford - WOW005 - Thursday 9th December - 7:00-10:00pm
Colchester - WOW001 - Wednesday 23rd February - 7:00-10:00pm
Chelmsford - WOW002 - Tuesday 1st March - 7:00-10:00pm
Southend - WOW003 - Monday 4th April - 7:00-10:00pm
Collier Row - WOW 004 - Wednesday 4th May - 7:00-10:00pm
Chelmsford - WOW005 - Tuesday 17th May - 7:00-10:00pm
Course booking forms can be downloaded from the Essex County FA website – www.Essexfa.com or why not book your course online?
Alternatively for further information, please contact Glenn Moss on 01245-393093.
Suffolk County FA
Safeguarding Children Workshop - no details currently available
Welfare Officer Workshop - no details currently available
You are able to view and book these courses online by going to www.Suffolkfa.com
Alternatively, for further information, please contact Justin Deeny 01449-776315
Keeping People Informed
Please make sure that your members know who their Club committee and officers are, especially your Club Welfare Officer. Provide your Club officers with identity tags, name who your officers are on your Club publications and also display your Club contact points on notice boards and in clubhouses. Additionally, why not encourage your club officials to come along to home fixtures and make themselves known. For Club Welfare officers, it would be very beneficial to go along and watch training sessions and introduce yourself to parents. You may be surprised at how pleased, parents are to know who you all are. This way, should there be any concerns or problems, people will know who to talk to/ write to and it also gives the chance/ opportunity to find out how your parents feel about following your Club and the Respect Codes of Conduct.
Code of Conducts and the Respect Programme
During the 2008/9 season, the Colchester and District Youth league membership agreed to take on board the Respect programme which included signing up to the Respect Codes of conduct and providing spectators with a designated spectator area, ideally a minimum of 2 metres from the touchline with parents/spectators standing on one side of the pitch and managers and subs standing on the other side. Please make sure that all your parents have signed up to these Codes of conduct in addition to your own Club Codes of Conduct. Don’t forget to show that your team captains understand their responsibilities under the Respect Programme by wearing their Respect armband.
Give the signed copies of the Respect codes of conduct to your Club Welfare Officer as part of their role is to communicate the benefits of the Respect Programme to all club members and also monitor the behaviour of your members. Go along to home matches and check to see if the spectators are standing behind the designated spectator area. If not, politely ask them to stand behind the designated spectator area and remind them that they have signed up to the codes of conduct which this forms part of.
The FA Respect Codes of Conduct can be found in the League Handbook.
Recruitment and Selection of Volunteers
It can often be difficult to recruit volunteers and it is always a good idea to find out a little bit more about them before they take on a specific role within your Club. Please find below downloadable copies of the FA’s guidance on recruiting volunteers, an example application form and reference form. Please note that these forms can be used for anyone interested in volunteering at your Club from coffee bar helper to team manager and coach. Also remember that if someone is new to a role within your Club, it can be very beneficial to have someone as a mentor. This means that they always have someone to talk to about any problems they may have or ideas that may come to mind to help improve what they and maybe others are doing.
ISA VETTING AND BARRING AND CRBs
As you are all aware the Government have put ISA’s Vetting and Barring scheme on hold for the time being. However, as already advised, a new combined CRB/ ISA form was created which is a purple form rather than a white one so please make sure you are using the correct form. Additional forms can be obtained from either Essex/ Suffolk FA depending on which county you affiliate with. The cost is now £15 which is the administration charge. As previously advised, please concentrate on ensuring any new coaches or managers or anyone else at your club who have regular contact with children ( i.e first aider for example) has a CRB completed. For the time being, please do not worry about renewing the CRB’s for your coaches/ managers whose CRB is now more than 3 years old.
Please note that League Welfare Officers in Essex are able to verify CRB’s so if you need help, please ask.
FA Celebrating Football Through Photographs and Video
There are often concerns raised by parents about people taking photographs at matches. Please read this document carefully and keep a copy available for viewing at your Clubhouse, if applicable, and with your Team Managers .Each year, when you are registering players for the new season, remember to ask the parents and player if they are happy to have their picture taken. If they have said “no” for any reason, make sure that the Team Manager is aware. This may help to prevent any unpleasant incidents.
Read the guidelines here: Celebrating Football Through Photographs and Video
Clubs should have the following policies in place:
- Safeguarding Children Policy
- Equal Opportunities and Anti-Discrimination Policy
- Anti-bullying Policy
Please find detailed below links to the FA templates for the Safeguarding children and Anti-bullying policies:
Health and Safety
Child welfare also encompasses health and safety. If you are lucky enough to have football pitches which your Club uses exclusively, it would be very wise to draw up a Club health and Safety Policy and also undertake risk assessments. For those of you hiring pitches, please ask the local authority for their regulations and best practice for using the facilities. You need to be sure what you are responsible for and what the provider is responsible for. This information should be highlighted when you initially hire the facility. As a club you should also have in place public liability and civil liability insurance. Other points you need to make sure you have thought about as a Club, and may already have set up, are as follows:
- Establish where and how access is gained by emergency services to the pitch/ club house
- Sign up and abide by the FA’s Goalpost Safety Guidance (further info from County FA )
- Check the pitch before use for obvious dangers e.g. broken glass
- Check if there have been changes made adjacent to where your home pitches are located that may have an effect on providing a safe environment for your players i.e. is it safe for your players to retrieve footballs from the adjacent field ? If not, why not – what measures can you put in place to make it safe ?
- Ensure goalposts are erected appropriately and always supervised by adults
- Establish where the nearest phone is
- Establish those individuals who have a recognised first aid qualification within the Club
- Establish emergency procedures within the Club and ensure all coaches/ managers/ committee members are aware of these procedures
- Utilise the FA’s guidance for travel and trips (available on your Welfare Officer’s CD rom) when transporting club members to and from football activities and when organising trips away.
- Have an incident report form and an accident book for each team within your Club. (Remember to ensure that everyone knows who the incident forms should be returned to).
- Make sure each team has a first aid bag, which is regularly checked and resupplied when items have been used. Make sure you have a whole club check prior to the beginning of the new season.
CDYL Welfare Officer - Helen Clancy tel 07947 562089 email email@example.com
Essex County FA Welfare Officer - Helen Hever tel :01245-393098 Helen.Hever@essexfa.com
Suffolk County FA Welfare Officer - Robert Peace tel: 01449-776380/07572107791 firstname.lastname@example.org
N.S.P.C.C. - (0808) 800 5000
Local Safeguarding Children – (Outside Office Hours): (0845) 606 1212
Childline - (0800) 11 11
Police - 999