This page has information on what the role of a Club Welfare Officer entails and what information & skills that person requires. If you are looking to appoint a Club Welfare Officer, this is the right place.
The role of a Club Welfare Officer
As a club, you have a duty of care to everyone who is affected by your activities. You need to ensure that U18s and Adults at Risk are in a safe, welcoming environment. Appointing a Club Welfare Officer is a really good way of doing this as it means there is a dedicated individual who people can go to for they have a concern or worry.
It not only helps protect participants against abuse of any kind, but aids in educating coaches, volunteers and committee members on good practice, processes & procedures, what to do if they have any concerns about someone's safety and helps embed good practice within the club.
Club Welfare Officers don't have to be safeguarding experts, they just need to be someone who is passionate about protecting the vulnerable and ensure that clubs adhere to Basketball England's policies. The specific roles and responsibilities of a welfare officer can be found in our Club Welfare Officer guidance document:
The Club Welfare Officer needs to be someone who can be called upon to assist Basketball England in any investigation/concern that is raised against the club, this involves:
A great way to support your position as Club Welfare Officer is to display this poster at games and training to get the message out and get people taking action to keep young people safe in basketball. The aim of the poster is to provide information to all young people and Adults at Risk about who to contact if they have any concerns over their safety.
Appointing a Club Welfare Officer
If you’re a club looking to appoint a welfare officer, or an individual at a club who is considering if the role is for them, it’s important to know what is expected. The person should be approachable, be comfortable talking to young people and Adults at Risk and hold an enhanced DBS check which has been checked by Basketball England. Don’t worry, we’re not expecting a Safeguarding expert, as there are specific authorities which are there for this, but if you’re passionate about making sure every child and Adult at Risk is in a safe environment within your club this may be the role for you.
If an individual has been chosen, the club will need to provide support and the officer should be put on some training.
We recommend the following training
You can also get support from your local County Sports Partnership and the NSPCC has lots of information which can support you in your role in safeguarding children at your club. You may always want to familiarise yourselves with our FAQs, Parental Guidance and Advice for Children pages.
Once you have appointed your Club Welfare Officer, let us know! Contact the Safeguarding team and inform them who your Club Welfare Officer is to ensure we are contacting the correct person. Ask your Club Welfare Officer to become a member of Basketball England and tick the box to indicate this is their role. This will ensure that important updates reach your club.
Did you know? Club Welfare Officers can be set up as Basketball England Verifier for verifying DBS checks. Click here for more information!
Welfare Officer Network
Often, Welfare Officers find the best support through communicating with other people in their position in other clubs. We have set up a platform on 'Hive Learning' so this can happen. If you want to join, please send an email to our team and we will send you an activation link.
Each Club Welfare Officer should hold information on their local points for contact with regards to safeguarding concerns and training. Below are good places to look for more information around safeguarding.
Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs)
To help ensure that young people are properly protected, Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs) have been put in place as another organisation to raise a concern with. Membership includes local authorities, health bodies and the police. If you’re interested in getting further qualifications in child protection, your LSCB is a good place to start and all clubs should have these contacts to hand.
Local Authority Designated Officer (LADOs)
The role of the LADO is set out in the HM Government guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children. LADOs are involved in the management and oversight of individual cases where it is alleged that a person working with children has:
The LADO role applies to paid workers, unpaid workers, volunteers, foster carers, casual workers, agency or anyone self employed. The procedures for managing allegations includes concerns, allegations or offences that may arise in someone’s personal life as well as at work.
County Sports Partnerships (CSPs)
Regardless of how much the responsibilities of CSPs include activity delivery for young people, one of their crucial roles is to act as a ‘hub’ in promoting safeguarding, and providing information, guidance and signposting to partners across their areas. Each CSP will have a designated safeguarding lead to deal with safeguarding concerns, to find your local CSP you can use the CSP Network's website to find your CSP.
Children's Services - Local Authorities
The Local Authority in the area where the child lives is responsible for making provision for the child, so long as it is necessary. The Children Act 1989 places a duty on Local Authorities to take reasonable steps to identify a child in need. Once a referral has been made to the Local Authority, they will decide within one working day whether or not to take action. The local authority can provide a range of services for children in need. These can include:-
The Citizen's Advice Bearau provides further information on local authorities' children's services on their website.