Safeguarding and Welfare
Everyone has a shared responsibility for safeguarding and creating safe, enjoyable environments in Orienteering whether as an Orienteer, parent, coach, club official or spectator.
We want you to feel safe and welcome.
At South London Orienteers (SLOW) we are committed to the principles of Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults and our Safeguarding Officer is available if you need support or would like any advice.
We encourage you to raise any concerns you have, or incidents you witness, at the earliest opportunity to our Club Safeguarding Officer, Alan Leakey, or British Orienteering’s Lead Safeguarding Officer.
Further information is available on British Orienteering’s Safeguarding pages.
Reporting a concern or incident
All reports are taken seriously and dealt with in a sensitive manner.
Should you wish to report a concern or incident, please contact:
- Club Safeguarding Officer: Alan Leakey 07712 583971 ">
- Club Associate Safeguarding Officer: Joanna Cole ">
- British Orienteering’s Lead Safeguarding Officer: Peter Brooke 07540 150963 ">
This includes any concerns about safeguarding either within orienteering or outside of orienteering and any concern over adult behaviour related to the welfare of children or adults at risk, including those away from the sport that involves members or participants.
All reports will be logged in confidence with the Lead Safeguarding Officer who will also explain the processes which will be followed depending on each case.
SLOW Safeguarding Officers
Alan Leakey has been orienteering since he was a teenager and now finds himself competing as an M70. He has been a Club Coach, running training weekends and also been Planner and Organiser at both large and small events, so is well aware of the potential safety issues involved.
Joanna Cole assists Alan in his role. “I started orienteering in Italy about 15 years ago and enjoyed it as a great way of getting lost in the mountains! I Still enjoy getting lost, so my orienteering level is not so great (but feel I get value for money for my subscription). By day I am a financial controller for a vegan food company so if you need cake or number crunching, I am your woman.“
South London Orienteers support and follow British Orienteering’s two safeguarding policies,
For further information including resources and training opportunities visit the British Orienteering website or contact the British Orienteering Lead Safeguarding Officer.
For coaches and other people working with children or vulnerable adults
The previous CRB (criminal record bureau) process has been superseded by the requirement for a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check.
If you may need to complete a DBS check then please use this link to the British Orienteering Coaching pages where you will find a document that explains who should undergo a DBS check as well as the process involved. You will also find a copy of the form that needs to be completed.
In addition to contacting the Club Safeguarding Officer, Club Associate Safeguarding Officer or the Lead Safeguarding Officer, there are a couple of forms you can also use to report a concern or incident.
British Orienteering Quick Report Form
British Orienteering has introduced this quick report form to make immediate reports to the Lead Safeguarding Officer. This form is user friendly on mobile devices.
On completion of this form the Lead Safeguarding Officer will follow up with you directly.
Other Reporting Forms
- Incident reporting form – children and young people
- Incident reporting form – adults
- Reporting a concern form
If you complete one of these forms, it should be emailed to either your Club Safeguarding Officer or the Lead Safeguarding Officer, as soon as possible.
If you need any advice on how to complete a form or what should you do if someone reports something to you, this British Orienteering video (5 minutes) will help you.
Orienteering as a Sport
When you bring your children orienteering we will help you to ensure their welfare and safety by ensuring that:
- The people who run the sport are safe to be with.
- Steps are taken so that children are safe from other participants and strangers.
- The challenges set are manageable and children are able to find their way around an orienteering course.
- Children are not likely to be injured but if they are there are people and procedures in place to look after them.
- A child’s individual needs will be considered within the nature of the sport.
The people who run the sport are safe to be with:
Coaches and officials who have unsupervised regular contact with children and adults at risk have satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service checks.
Clubs have safeguarding officers.
Steps are taken so that children are safe from other participants and from strangers:
Organisers of events and activities carry out risk assessments and have procedures for managing safety in public places.
As of the date of this policy, February 2023, organised orienteering as a sport has had no reported incidents of children coming to any harm from strangers in public places whilst orienteering.
The challenges set will be manageable and children are able to find their way around an orienteering course (or if not they are able to find their way back), and the ground they cross is not too rough for their experience/strength:
Planners of courses and activities follow rules and guidelines to provide courses or activities with different levels of challenge to meet different needs.
We keep track of every individual at every event or activity to ensure that they are accounted for. We provide information to understand the level of challenge on courses offered.
We expect parents to follow guidelines about which courses are appropriate for children. In order to meet our safeguarding and insurance responsibilities, we may refuse to start someone on a course if we consider this an undue risk.
Children are not likely to be injured but if they are there are people and procedures in place to look after them
Officials organising events and activities carry out risk assessments.
They have procedures for finding and looking after lost children and for providing first aid.
A child’s individual needs will be considered within the nature of the sport:
At events and on our website, we explain what physical and navigational skills are needed to complete a course and how we can help with an individual need.
At activities led by coaches if we are told about a special need we will tell you what adaptations can be made to make our activities accessible.