All leagues and clubs with youth teams must have a named Welfare Officer who has an enhanced FA CRB certificate and has completed the FA Safeguarding Children and the FA Welfare Officers Workshop.

It is important that all clubs and leagues understand these requirements because if you don’t you will not be able to affiliate.

New clubs will be given the time and the opportunity to have temporary welfare officers while their own club official under goes the necessary training.

Clubs should consider whether the number of welfare officers they have is adequate for the number of teams they have. Lincolnshire County FA is recommending that assistant welfare officers be appointed for clubs with over 10 teams (as per The FA’s best practice guidelines).

The Role of the Club/League Welfare Officer

Your two key responsibilities are:

 

1. To be clear about the club's responsibilities when running activities for children and young people. This involves;

 

  • Ensuring these responsibilities are well understood by others.
  • Working with the Youth League Welfare Officer (YLWO).
  • Working with your CFA Welfare Officer.
  • Promoting The FA's Respect programme and helping to develop best-practice processes.

2. To help club personnel understand what their 'duty of care' towards children and young people actually means and entails on a day-to-day basis.

 

In order to carry out your responsibilities you need to follow these five simple steps

1.    Put in place...

 

  • A safeguarding children policy and anti-bullying policy.
  • Responsible recruitment getting the right people involved.
  • The Respect Codes.

2.    Understand...

 

  • What Respect aims to do.
  • The benefits of implementing the Respect codes.
  • The quick wins to be gained by using The FA's safeguarding children.
  • Best practice guidance.  
  • Why certain roles require an Enhanced CRB check and how The FA CRB process works.
  • How to refer a concern about the welfare of a child.

3.    Communicate with...

 

  • Club officials.
  • Parents/spectators and get them to sign up to the Respect codes.
  • Coaches and managers about the importance of being consistent role models for their players.
  • Your YLWO - introduce yourself, find out how they can support you and let them know what you are doing to safeguard children in your club.
  • Your CFA Welfare Officer if you need help or advice.

4.    Encourage...

 

  • Parents to complete the Respect education programme.
  • Coaches, team managers, first aiders/medics to complete The FA's Safeguarding Children Workshop.
  • Coaches and team managers to listen to their players thoughts, ideas and views.
  • The committee to make use of the designated spectator area at all games.

5.    Monitor...

 

  • Repeated incidents of poor behaviour and liaise with your committee (and where necessary YLWO or CFA Welfare Officer).
  • Compliance with Enhanced CRB checks through The FA CRB Unit for those who require one.

For more information on how to become a Welfare Officer or advice on welfare issues please contact gary.rooney@lincolnshirefa.com call 08449 67 07 08 (Option 4).

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