CODE OF PRACTICE FOR COACHES, OFFICIALS, VOLUNTEERS AND PARENTS

SALTWALK Club follows the policies and guidelines referenced within this document which are those of British Canoeing and its Home Nation associations.

It is important that all staff and volunteers involved with children and young people understand their responsibility to safeguard children. In addition, those that deploy coaches, volunteers and officials know what standard of behaviour is acceptable. A Code of Conduct has several important functions.

It sets out what behaviour is acceptable and unacceptable – defines standards of practice expected from those to whom it applies – forms the basis for challenging and improving practice and ability – helps to safeguard staff/volunteers by encouraging them to adhere to agreed standards of practice – sets out for children and parents/carers the standards of practice which they and the organisation should expect from those who work/volunteer with children. British Canoeing supports and requires all staff and volunteers involved with children and young people (under 18) within Paddlesport to observe the following standards of practice, including verbal and non-verbal actions when involved in activities with children.   All concerns about breach of this Code of Conduct will be taken seriously and responded to in line with the relevant Home Nation policies.

The standards of practice given below are indicative not exhaustive, and serve to highlight key areas.

GOOD PRACTICE:

  • Make sport fun, enjoyable and promote fair play.
  • Treat all children equally, with respect, dignity and fairness.
  • Involve parents/carers wherever possible.
  • Build balanced relationships based on mutual trust.
  • Include children in the decision-making process wherever possible.
  • Always work in an open environment, wherever possible. Avoid private or unobserved situations.
  • Put the welfare of each child first before winning or achieving performance goals.
  • Be an excellent role model including not smoking or drinking alcohol in the company of children.
  • Give enthusiastic and constructive feedback rather than negative criticism.
  • Recognise the developmental needs and capacity of children.
  • Avoid excessive training and competition, pushing children against their will and putting undue pressure on them

UNACCEPTABLE PRACTICE:

  • Engaging in sexually provocative games, including horseplay.
  • Engaging in rough or physical contact unless it is permitted within the rules of the game or competition.
  • Forming intimate emotional, physical or sexual relationships with children.
  • Allowing or engaging in touching a child in a sexually suggestive manner.
  • Allowing children to swear or use sexualised language unchallenged.
  • Making sexually suggestive comments to a child, even in fun.
  • Allowing children (u18) to consume alcohol.
  • Reducing a child to tears as a form of control.
  • Allowing allegations made by a child to go unchallenged, unrecorded or not acted upon.
  • Inviting or allowing children to stay with you at your home.
  • A Coach and/or other leader sharing a room alone with a child

PRACTICES TO BE AVOIDED:

In the context of your role within canoeing, the following should be avoided:

  • Having ‘favourites’ – this could lead to resentment and jealousy by other children and could be misinterpreted by others.
  • Spending excessive amounts of time alone with children away from others.
  • Entering children’s bedrooms/sleeping areas on trips away from home, unless in an emergency or in the interest of health and safety. If it is necessary to enter rooms, knock and say that you are coming in. The door should remain open, if appropriate.
  • Where possible, avoid doing things of a personal nature for children that they can do for themselves.

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