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Dear Reader

I hope you find this e-bulletin of interest. We welcome feedback on the content, including any issues that you think we should have covered but did not.

The LSCB is about to review progress made in 2016/17, reviewing our priorities and resetting them if that is considered necessary. You can find the priorities here. I would welcome your thoughts on whether these are the priorities we should continue to focus on in 2017/18 (please email Sabina Malique).

Best wishes
Andrew Christie
Chair, Lambeth Safeguarding Children Board

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LSCB training

Due to high demand for the 'Thresholds and Referral Briefing sessions' held in January, an additional two sessions have been scheduled on: 
  • 14th March 2017 and 
  • 28th March 2017
Further LSCB training includes 
  • 'Understanding Neglect' on 9th March 2017 and
  • Level 2 'Working Together to Safeguard children' on 21st March 2017
Training and briefing sessions need to be booked via the Learning pool on the LSCB website
The remaining training for 2016/17 can be found in our Training programme; the 2017/18 Programme will be published soon. 
Level 1 Safeguarding training is provided in form of an e-learning package through Kwango which is free of charge. This provides an induction into Safeguarding and should be completed by all staff and volunteers who have infrequent contact with children and young people such as GP receptionists, church administrators or group leaders, librarians, groundsmen, recreation assistants or environmental health officers. More information on how to access this can be found in the E-learning section of the LSCB website. 

Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) training

VAWG provides training around issues affecting predominantly girls and women such as Domestic Violence (DV) and Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). The VAWG training programme includes information about how to book places. The next training course is FGM on 16th March (half day). Please add your name to the waiting list if a training is fully booked. 

 Feedback about

the new LSCB Website

The new LSCB website has received positive feedback. Professionals from different sectors and a lay person described it as "pitched at the right level", "easy to navigate"  and "reads well". Some improvements were suggested which have been implemented. We are awaiting feedback from young people who are currently testing the website. Since its launch in December the website has had over 3,000 visits, over 2/3 from first time visitors. The most popular pages are the Training and the Thresholds pages. The website aims to provide useful information and tools for people working with children (paid staff or volunteers), parents and carers, children and young people as well as the general public and we welcome any feedback for improvements.

LSCB communication campaigns

The LSCB has planned to run four communication campaigns throughout 2017/18. The first campaign "Together, we can tackle child abuse" is an England wide campaign by the Department of Education. The aim is to help people recognise the signs of child abuse and neglect and to encourage members of the public to report their concerns and overcome the barriers that stop people reporting. Information and links to posters and leaflets will be circulated. We hope that you and your organization will support our campaigns. We all have a role to play in protecting children and young people from abuse and neglect.  

The importance
of images and videos in young people's digital lives

A survey conducted by UK Safer Internet Centre amongst 8-17 year olds  established a pervasive use of images and videos by young people which can bring risks and pressures with it. Whether young people are exposed to images or videos unsuitable for their age, bullies comment on their images or young people take risks by sharing images with someone they only know online, the possible negative impact and dangers are far reaching. Despite a minimum age of 13 on many social media services, including Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat and Twitter, many of the younger age group (8-12) confirmed that they used them. It is important for professionals working with young people to be aware of the prevalence and use of such services and the impact the misuse of images and videos can have on the self-esteem and the vulnerability of young people who shared for example nude images. Supporting the safe use of images and videos, an open dialogue about possible consequences of sharing images and videos and a no-tolerance approach for example towards cyberbullying within organisations is essential. Read more

Cyberbullying guidance

Childnet has issued an updated guidance on understanding, preventing and responding to cyberbullying. While the guidance is written for schools, it can also be applied to other organisations working with children. Cyberbullying affects self-esteem and self-confidence and can affect mental health and wellbeing, in the worst cases leading to self-harm and suicide. Read about how to deal with cyberbullying and what measures your organisation can implement to help prevent cyberbullying from happening.

Self-help tool for children experiencing bullying

Childline has launched an online self-help tool that guides children and young people through a set of questions and gives them the tools to build confidence and seek support based on their answers.  'Bounce back from bullying' aims to help young people understand whether what they are experiencing is bullying and build their resilience and show them how to get help.

Understanding Adolescent Neglect: Troubled Teens.
A study by The Children's Society of the links between parenting and adolescent neglect (Nov 2016). Please click on the image.

Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and Peer-on-Peer abuse

According to research by Barnado's, recorded cases of children committing sexual offences against other children increased by 78 per cent in England and Wales between 2013 and 2016. Real figures are expected to be even higher. In Lambeth, CSE including peer-on- peer abuse has been recognized as a problem which is often linked to other concerns such as Serious Youth Violence (SYV) and gang involvement, children going missing and substance misuse. Lambeth has set up a 'Young People at Risk' Task and Finish group which is developing a new approach to young people at risk of CSE, SYV and gangs, missing and substance abuse. An initial proposal will go to the LSCB in March and a fully formalised approach should be available by May. Find more information about CSE including videos, recent research reports and a CSE Matrix on our LSCB website.

Handbook for foster carers of teenagers

Fostering a child can be challenging, young people experiencing puperty as well as dealing with being removed from their family might display behaviour that is difficult to understand and manage. The Rees Centre has published a handbook for foster carers summarising key points from research findings about fostering teenagers. Areas covered include:
  • attachment and foster care
  • the start of the placement
  • understanding the needs of young people
  • risk taking
  • sexuality and sexual health.
The handbook provides helpful advice for foster carers to better understand the young person, remembering that adjustment to change takes time and that the young person may have had many moves, and moving to a new home can be a daunting experience. Read more

Safeguarding culture
in Sport

Following the recent news about footballers reporting historic abuse in football clubs, this is a good opportunity for sports clubs and any groups providing activities for children to take stock of their safeguarding arrangements. There are particular risk factors affecting certain providers such as the power imbalance created by adults being in a position of trust, organisational cultures where it is difficult to challenge inappropriate behaviours and opportunities to remove a child or children from their families and peers. So ask yourself:

  1. Does your organisation have a Safeguarding policy? 
  2. Have all staff and volunteers been vetted properly and trained in safeguarding?
  3. Does your organisation have a Designated Safeguarding lead and do all know who this person is? 
A self-audit tool (Section 11 audit) to guide you through such questions and a Safeguarding policy template can be found on our LSCB website. Read a briefing about Safeguarding culture in Sport.
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Phone: 0207 926 4224

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