West Sussex Safeguarding & Child Protection Policy

 VIM Camps Ltd is committed to building a ‘culture of safety’ in which the children in our care are protected from abuse and harm, radicalization and sexual exploitation.   

The club will respond promptly and appropriately to all incidents or concerns of abuse that may occur. The club’s child protection procedures comply with all relevant legislation and with guidance issued by  West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership https://www.westsussexscp.org.uk/ and The Pan Sussex Child Protection and Safeguarding Procedures https://sussexchildprotection.procedures.org.uk/. 

There is a DSL / Designated Safeguarding Lead C (formerly known as the CPO / Child Protection Officer) available at all times while the club is in session. The DSL coordinates child protection issues and liaises with external agencies (e.g. School, Social Care and Ofsted). 

The club’s designated DSL / on-call DSL’s are Sarah Sims-Fielding & Donna Bovaird. 

 Forms of child abuse and neglect: 

Child abuse is any form of physical, emotional or sexual mistreatment or lack of care that leads to injury or harm. An individual may abuse or neglect a child directly, or by failing to protect them from harm. Some forms of child abuse and neglect are listed below.  

  • Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child so as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve making the child feel that they are worthless, unloved, or inadequate. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone. 
  • Physical abuse can involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may be also caused when a parent or carer feigns the symptoms of, or deliberately causes, ill health to a child. 
  • Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child to take part in sexual activities, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. This can involve physical contact, or non-contact activities such as showing children sexual activities or encouraging them to behave in sexually inappropriate ways. 
  • Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and emotional needs. It can involve a failure to provide adequate food, clothing and shelter, to protect a child from physical and emotional harm, to ensure adequate supervision or to allow access to medical treatment. 
  • If sexual exploitation, female genital mutilation or forced marriage are suspected, at risk or disclosed we will follow the same procedures as set out for responding to child abuse. 
  • If peer-on-peer abuse is at risk, suspected or disclosed we will follow the same procedures as set out above for responding to child abuse. 
  • If radicalisation is at risk, suspected or disclosed we will follow the same procedures as set out above for responding to child abuse. 

Signs of child abuse and neglect: 

Signs of possible abuse and neglect may include:  

  • significant changes in a child’s behaviour  
  • deterioration in a child’s general well-being 
  • unexplained bruising or marks 
  • comments made by a child which give cause for concern 
  • reasons to suspect neglect or abuse outside the setting, eg in the child’s home, or that a girl may have been subjected to (or is at risk of) female genital mutilation (FGM), or that the child may have witnessed domestic abuse 
  • inappropriate behaviour displayed by other members of staff, or any other person. For example, inappropriate sexual comments, excessive one-to-one attention beyond the requirements of their role, or inappropriate sharing of images 

 FGM (Female Gender Mutilation) 

Signs of a girl at immediate risk of FGM may not know what’s going to happen. But she might talk about or you may become aware of: 

  • a long holiday abroad or going ‘home’ to visit family 
  • relative or cutter visiting from abroad 
  • a special occasion or ceremony to ‘become a woman’ or get ready for marriage 
  • a female relative being cut – a sister, cousin, or an older female relative such as a mother or aunt. 

 Signs a practitioner may notice: 

  • A family arranging a long break abroad during the summer holidays.
    Unexpected, repeated or prolonged absence from school and the club 
  • Feeling isolated 
  •  in discomfort and may take a long time to use the toilet 
  • wants to talk about something but feels uncomfortable discussing it 

 If abuse is suspected or disclosed: 

When a child makes a disclosure to a member of staff, that member of staff will: 

  • Reassure the child that they were not to blame and were right to speak out  
  • Listen to the child but not question them 
  • Give reassurance that the staff member will take action 
  • Record the incident as soon as possible (see Logging an incident below). 

If a member of staff witnesses or suspects abuse, they will record the incident straightaway. If a third party expresses concern that a child is being abused, we will encourage them to contact Social Care directly. If they do not do so, we will explain that the Club is obliged to and the incident will be logged accordingly. 

 Peer-on-peer abuse: 

Children are vulnerable to abuse by their peers. Peer-on-peer abuse is taken seriously by staff and will be subject to the same child protection procedures as other forms of abuse. Staff are aware of the potential uses of information technology for bullying and abusive behaviour between young people.  

Staff will not dismiss abusive behaviour as normal between young people. The presence of one or more of the following in relationships between children should always trigger concern about the possibility of peer-on-peer abuse:  

  • Sexual activity (in primary school-aged children) of any kind, including sexting 
  • One of the children is significantly more dominant than the other (eg much older) 
  • One of the children is significantly more vulnerable than the other (eg in terms of disability, confidence, physical strength)  
  • There has been some use of threats, bribes or coercion to ensure compliance or secrecy.  

If peer-on-peer abuse is suspected or disclosed, we will follow the same procedures as set out above for responding to child abuse. 

 Extremism and radicalisation: 

All childcare settings have a legal duty to protect children from the risk of radicalisation and being 

drawn into extremism. There are many reasons why a child might be vulnerable to radicalisation, including: 

  • feeling alienated or alone 
  • seeking a sense of identity or individuality 
  • suffering from mental health issues such as depression 
  • desire for adventure or wanting to be part of a larger cause 
  • associating with others who hold extremist beliefs 

 Signs of radicalisation: 

Signs that a child might be at risk of radicalisation include: 

  • changes in behaviour, for example becoming withdrawn or aggressive 
  • claiming that terrorist attacks and violence are justified 
  • viewing violent extremist material online 
  • possessing or sharing violent extremist material 

 If a member of staff suspects that a child is at risk of becoming radicalised, they will record any 

relevant information or observations on a Logging a concern form and refer the matter to the DSL. 

 Logging an incident: 

All information about the suspected abuse, disclosure or concern about radicalisation will be recorded on the Logging a concern form as soon as possible after the event. The record should include: 

  • Date of the disclosure or of the incident causing concern 
  • Date and time at which the record was made 
  • Name and date of birth of the child involved 
  • A factual report of what happened. If recording a disclosure, you must use the child’s own words. 
  • Name, signature and job title of the person making the record. 

The record will be given to the Club’s CPO who will decide whether they need to contact West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership / Integrated Front Door (IFD) and make a referral or the Local Authority Prevent Co-ordinator (channel), also via West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership / IFD. If a crime has been committed or a child is in immediate danger, the DSL will call the police. For more serious concerns the DSL will contact the Police on the non-emergency number (101), or the antiterrorist hotline on 0800 789 321.All referrals to IFD will be followed up in writing within 48 hours. If a member of staff thinks that the incident has not been dealt with properly, they may contact IFD directly. 

Allegations against staff:  

If anyone makes an allegation of child abuse against a member of staff: 

  • The allegation will be recorded on an Incident record form. Any witnesses to the incident should sign and date the entry to confirm it. 
  • The allegation must be reported to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) team who are based at West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership will advise if other agencies (eg police) should be informed, and the Club will act upon their advice. Any telephone reports to the LADO will be followed up in writing within 48 hours. 
  • Following advice from the LADO, it may be necessary to suspend the member of staff pending full investigation of the allegation.  
  • The member of staff will be asked to take leave while the allegation is being fully investigated. 
  • If appropriate, the Club will make a referral to the Disclosure and Barring Service.  
  • If an allegation is made against a DSL then the other DSL will record and report the allegation to LADO and Ofsted. They will also be asked to take leave while the allegation is being fully investigated. 


Promoting awareness among staff: 

The Club promotes awareness of child abuse and the risk of radicalisation through its staff training. The 

Club ensures that: 

  • the DSL has relevant experience and receives appropriate training in safeguarding and the Prevent Duty, and is aware of the Channel Programme and how to access it 
  • designated person training is refreshed every two years  
  • safe recruitment practices are followed for all new staff 
  • all staff have a copy of this Safeguarding (Child Protection) policy, understand its contents and are vigilant to signs of abuse, neglect or radicalisation 
  • all staff are aware of their statutory duties with regard to the disclosure or discovery of child abuse, and concerns about radicalisation 
  • all staff receive basic safeguarding training, and safeguarding is a permanent agenda item at all staff meetings 
  • all staff receive basic training in the Prevent Duty 
  • staff are familiar with where all Safeguarding documentation is kept i.e. Disclosure forms, records of incidents etc are all filed in the Client & Staff Medical Forms, Administering Medicines, Accidents & Incidents file with all other files in the locked cupboard 
  • the Club’s procedures are in line with the guidance in ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018)’, ‘Prevent duty guidance for England and Wales (2021) and staff are familiar with ‘What To Do If You’re Worried A Child Is Being Abused (2015)’. 


Use of mobile phones and cameras: 

Photographs will only be taken of children with their parents’ permission. Only the club camera will be 

used to take photographs of children at the Club, except with the express permission of the manager. 

Neither staff nor children nor visitors may use their mobile phones or wearable technology such as 

smart watches to take photographs at the Club. For more details see our Mobile Phone and Wearable 

Technology Policy. 


Internet Safety: 

Online abuse, cyber bullying, including child sexual abuse online and online grooming are all types of online abuse. 

The signs that a child may be experiencing abuse online may include: 

  • spending lots, much more or much less time online, texting, gaming or using social media 
  • withdrawn, upset or outraged after using the internet or texting 
  • secretive about who they’re talking to and what they’re doing online or on their mobile phone 
  • lots of new phone numbers, texts or e-mail addresses on their mobile phone, laptop or tablet. 

Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre is run by the UK police and deals with concerns relating to Cyberbullying, Hacking, Viruses, Mobiles, Harmful Content or Grooming.Their website is www.ceop.police.uk.  

We have a separate internet safety policy which outlines how we intend to ensure internet safety, if applicable. 


West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership / Integrated Front Door (IFD) 


email WSChildrenservices@westsussex.gov.uk   

or email using a webform :https://www.westsussex.gov.uk/education-children-and-families/keeping-children-safe/raise-a-concern-about-a-child/ 

Phone: 01403 229900 


Emergency Duty Team (EDT) 

Outside of office hours (5.00pm-9.00am weekdays) or at weekends and bank holidays 033 022 26664 


If the Emergency Duty Team line is unavailable and you need to report an emergency safeguarding concern 

07711 769657  


West Sussex County Council LADO Contact Details 

The LADOs for West Sussex are Miriam Williams and Donna Tomlinson. The Asst. LADO is Sally Arbuckle. 


Consultation Contact Number (Available 09.00 – 17.00) 0330 222 6450 

LADO Service Contact Number: 01403 229900 

LADO Service email address: LADO@WestSussex.gov.uk 


Contact numbers 

For  emergencies (If you think a child is in immediate danger, call the police) 999 

Local Sussex Police (non-urgent) 101 

NSPCC 0808 800 500 

Anti-terrorist hotline: 0800 789 321 

NCPCC FGM hotline 0800 028 3550 

Ofsted 0300 123 1231 


West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership 

https://www.westsussexscp.org.uk/ Email:  wsscp@westsussex.gov.uk  


NSPCC FGM website 


Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre website https://www.ceop.police.uk/safety-centre/ 

policy was adopted by: VIM Camps Ltd
To be reviewed: 

Written in accordance with the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (2021): Safeguarding and Welfare requirements: Child Protection [3.4-3.8] and Suitable People [3.9-3.13]