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Safeguarding Policy Statement

Imara’s Safeguarding Policy Statement

Overall aims of Imara

Therapists provide therapy for children, young people and vulnerable adults, including evidence based therapeutic models. Therapy approaches include individual art, dance, drama, music and play therapy sessions; parent/child groupwork using the NSPCC Domestic Abuse Recovering Together model; NSPCC model Letting the Future In therapy work with children and families; trauma recovery therapy approaches. 

Children and Young People’s Independent Sexual Violence Advisers (CHISVA) work closely with the police, CPS and court professionals daily as they support families throughout the Criminal Justice Process. They support assessments with families and link with education providers, Criminal Injuries compensation authority, social workers and Imara therapists.

The participation group, young people who are experts by experience, meet fortnightly as a social network alongside their role as an advisory forum for Imara, offering support regionally and nationally, e.g. focus group for the Office of National Statistics; support to Police and Crime Commissioner on a Youth Charter.

Business support team provide evaluation and monitoring; raise awareness and resources through social media and website; outreach to diverse communities locally and develop our education programme alongside participation group.

The purpose of this policy statement is:

This policy applies to anyone working on behalf of Imara, including CEO, senior leads, the board of trustee, employees, trainees, volunteers, interns, sessional staff and participation group.

Legal Framework

This policy has been drawn up based on legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect children in England. A summary of the key legislation and guidance is available from nspcc.org.uk/childprotection.

Supporting documents

This policy statement should be read alongside our organisational policies and procedures, guidance and other related documents e.g.:

Privacy notice

As Imara we believe that:

  • Children have the right to be and feel safe, to be listened to and to be believed in
  • No one should have to face their past or their problems alone, the voice of the survivor is expert
  • Support should be there when the survivor is ready, provided at their pace, and last as long as needed – no waiting
  • Recovery from trauma is possible and holistic, specialist and creative therapies work
  • Talking about sexual abuse is not shameful, ignoring it is – talking enables us to tackle it
  • Child sexual abuse occurs in every community and the whole of society suffers – there is a cost to all of us
  • Everyone has a responsibility to tackle child sexual abuse, to promote the welfare of all children and young people, to keep them safe and to practise in a way that protects them.

We recognise that:

• the welfare of children is paramount in all the work we do and in all the decisions we take

• working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare

 • all children, regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation have an equal right to protection from all types of harm or abuse

• some children are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues

• extra safeguards may be needed to keep children who are additionally vulnerable safe from abuse.

We will seek to keep children and young people safe by:

• valuing, listening to and respecting them

• appointing a nominated child protection lead for children and young people, a deputy and a lead trustee/board member for safeguarding

• adopting child protection and safeguarding best practice through our policies, procedures and code of conduct for staff and volunteers

• developing and implementing an effective online safety policy and related procedures

• providing effective management for staff and volunteers through supervision, support, training and quality assurance measures so that all staff and volunteers know about and follow our policies, procedures and behaviour codes confidently and competently

• recruiting and selecting staff and volunteers safely, ensuring all necessary checks are made

• recording and storing and using information professionally and securely, in line with data protection legislation and guidance [more information about this is available from the Information Commissioner’s Office: ico.org.uk/for organisations]

• sharing information about safeguarding and good practice with children and their families via leaflets, posters, group work and one-to-one discussions

• making sure that children, young people and their families know where to go for help if they have a concern

• using our safeguarding and child protection procedures to share concerns and relevant information with agencies who need to know, and involving children, young people, parents, families and carers appropriately

• using our procedures to manage any allegations against staff and volunteers appropriately

• creating and maintaining an anti-bullying environment and ensuring that we have a policy and procedure to help us deal effectively with any bullying that does arise

• ensuring that we have effective complaints and whistleblowing measures in place

 • ensuring that we provide a safe physical environment for our children, young people, staff and volunteers, by applying health and safety measures in accordance with the law and regulatory guidance

• building a safeguarding culture where staff and volunteers, children, young people and their families, treat each other with respect and are comfortable about sharing concerns.

Nominated designated safeguarding lead:

Name: Cath Wakeman

Phone/email: 07985709405 / cath@imara.org.uk

Safeguarding leads:

Stephanie Atkinson: stephanie.a@imara.org.uk

Melanie Page: melanie@imara.org.uk

Tara Tan: tara@imara.org.uk

Safeguarding trustee:

Name: Victoria Raynor

Email: victoria@raynorsafeguarding.com

Abuse is never okay and never the fault of the child