Safeguarding children and child protection

All organisations that work with or come into contact with children should have safeguarding policies and procedures to ensure that every child, regardless of their age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation, has a right to equal protection from harm.

Setting up and following good safeguarding policies and procedures means children are safe from adults and other children who might pose a risk. This includes voluntary and community organisations, faith groups, private sector providers, as well as schools, hospitals and sports clubs.

What is safeguarding?

Safeguarding is the action that is taken to promote the welfare of children and protect them from harm.

Safeguarding means:

  • protecting children from abuse and maltreatment
  • preventing harm to children’s health or development
  • ensuring children grow up with the provision of safe and effective care
  • taking action to enable all children and young people to have the best outcomes.

Child protection is part of the safeguarding process. It focuses on protecting individual children identified as suffering or likely to suffer significant harm. This includes child protection procedures which detail how to respond to concerns about a child.

Resources and guidance

For schools and colleges

Training, lesson plans, guidance and resources for schools and colleges.


Find out more

For health professionals

Resources for health practitioners, strategic leads and commissioners including specific guidance about harmful sexual behaviour. 


Find out more

For performing arts

Advice and guidance for keeping children safe in music, drama, dance, TV and theatre.

Find out more

Deaf and disabled children

How organisations can protect d/Deaf and disabled children from abuse.

Find out more

Writing a safeguarding policy statement

Guidance on setting out a safeguarding policy for your organisation.

Find out more

Safer recruitment

Explains what organisations need to do to make sure the people who work or volunteer for them are safe to work with children.

Find out more

Safeguarding checklist

An online safeguarding tool for organisations working with children and young people from 0-18 years. Easy to use checklist covers key safeguarding areas and essential resources.

Find out more

Photography and sharing images

Guidance for organisations, clubs and schools about photographing and recording children during events and activities. 

Find out more

Recommended adult to child ratios

Guidance on staffing and supervision ratios for working with children.

Find out more

Child protection system in the UK

Information about how child protection works in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales as well as a list of key dates and terms.

Find out more

Early help (early intervention)

Explains what early help (also known as early intervention) is, how to identify a child or family who may need early help and how to provide appropriate support.

Find out more

Managing allegations made against a child

Explains how an allegation of abuse may be made against a child, how people who work with children can respond and how to decide if a concern is a child protection issue.

Read more

Preventing abuse in positions of trust

How to recognise, respond to and prevent abuse from people in a position of authority such as teachers, care workers and doctors. Covers current legislation and guidance.

Find out more

Healthy and unhealthy relationships

Find out how to recognise the signs that a young person is in an unhealthy relationship and what action you can take.

Read more

Social media and online safety

Guidance for organisations and groups about communicating with children and young people online and through social media.

Find out more


Organisations can help prevent radicalisation. Find out more about why it's a safeguarding concern, what can make children vulnerable and what you can do to help protect them.

Find out more


Browse our list of online and face-to-face training courses to gain the skills you need to help keep children safe from abuse and neglect.

Find out more

Safer activities events

Advice on keeping groups of children and young people safe during activities, events, visits, day trips, outings and overnight stays.

Find out more

Managing allegations of abuse

Best practice for managing allegations of abuse against someone who works or volunteers with children.

Find out more

How to have difficult conversations with children

Guidance on how to prepare for having difficult conversations with children and young people and what you need to keep in mind when discussing sensitive topics.

Find out more

Charity trustees

Discover more about the safeguarding and child protection responsibilities that charity trustees have.

Find out more

Working with young volunteers

If you work with young volunteers, find out what you need to do to best support them and keep them safe.

Find out more

Safeguarding examples issues concerns

Our practice examples explain what you need to do to keep children safe in certain situations. 

Find out more

Lone working

What measures you need to consider when working on your own with children.

Find out more

Safeguarding and child protection for tutors

Explains what measures tutors need to take to help keep children safe when conducting tutoring sessions in their own home, at a child’s home or online.

Learn more

Continence issues and safeguarding

Explains why some children experience issues with continence or incontinence, what schools and organisations can do to support them and when it might be an indicator of a safeguarding concern.

Find out more

Safeguarding children from Black, Asian and minoritised ethnic communities

Explains the key issues facing Black, Asian and minoritised​ ethnic children, with guidance for how anyone working with children can help support and keep young people safe.

Show me more

Safeguarding LGBTQ+ children and young people

Explains why LGBTQ+ children might be at greater risk of some types of abuse and shares best practice for professionals on supporting and protecting them.

Show me more