Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE) has been awarded over £100k from the National Lottery Community Fund to promote good safeguarding practice to village and community halls throughout England.

ACRE will be working to make sure that the voluntary management committees that run village and community halls have the knowledge and confidence to provide a safe environment for all.

Advice and examples of best practice will be shared with those managing and using halls so that they fully understand their responsibilities and have appropriate and proportionate policies and procedures in place.

What’s next?

The project will be rolled out using ACRE’s network of 38 county-based members, including Community Lincs part of YMCA Lincolnshire, who already provide support to rural village and community halls.

We will be working with management committees to help them understand current legislation around safeguarding and make sure procedures are in place which reflect good practice.

Ultimately, our aim is to increase awareness of the importance of safeguarding and making sure that these important rural assets are welcoming and safe places for all.

England’s 10,000 village halls are at the heart of rural community life – providing a hub for social activities, classes and services. Through its network of skilled advisers, ACRE supports the 80,000 volunteers who run village halls and similar rural community buildings.

Useful links

Lincolnshire Safeguarding Children Partnership https://www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/safeguarding/lscp

Lincolnshire Safeguarding Adults Board https://www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/safeguarding/lsab

NCVO Safeguarding information https://knowhow.ncvo.org.uk/safeguarding

NSPCC child protection guidance https://learning.nspcc.org.uk/safeguarding-child-protection/voluntary-community-groups/

Safeguarding concerns: practice example – hiring out space https://learning.nspcc.org.uk/safeguarding-child-protection/safeguarding-concerns-practice-examples/

Safeguarding guidance for disabled children and adults at risk https://www.anncrafttrust.org/resources/

Voluntary and community groups guidance from NSPCC https://learning.nspcc.org.uk/safeguarding-child-protection/safeguarding-concerns-practice-examples/

A range of resources available to assist you in achieving best practice in safeguarding disabled children and adults at risk. https://www.anncrafttrust.org/resources/

ACRE produce the following information sheets that can assist Village and Community Hall committees to consider their safeguarding responsibilities – please contact our Community Buildings Adviser.

5. Village halls, children and young people
17. Trustees – roles and responsibilities
21. Overnight accommodation in village halls
22. Managing employees and volunteers

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Categories: Community Buildings and Play, Volunteering and Working Together.

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