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Creating Safer Space Training - An Update

The following information was taken from an update from the Methodist Church in Britain and was released in late March. The District will announce plans for remote training in due course.

During this incredibly difficult time our thoughts are with the most vulnerable in our communities and the need to ensure that we have the right safeguards in place to ensure that those who are most at risk are cared for.

The Methodist Church has published guidance to support congregations to consider how best to provide support for others, while balancing the risk to our volunteers and ensuring that church communities’ offers of support are as safe as possible. This guidance can be found here.

An important part of the church’s commitment to safeguarding is the ongoing training of all volunteers, staff and church leaders. However, in these unusual times we will need to take time to pause and reflect on the best way forward, and make pragmatic decisions at a local level.

Training delivery:
The recommendation from the Connexional office is that all safeguarding training is postponed until such time as clear government guidance is issued which indicates that it is appropriate to resume community activities and end social isolation. The Connexional office will look at the required timescales for completion of training and adjust this as appropriate to ensure that no one is disadvantaged by the current circumstances.

For those who have started a new role and are awaiting training as part of their safer recruitment, I would encourage them to access the safeguarding training handbooks whilst waiting for training to resume. These handbooks are available on the Methodist website and offer a helpful overview to understand abuse, what to look for and how to follow Methodist Safeguarding Policy. These can be found at:

  • Foundation (2020 Edition)

  • Advanced (2019 Edition)

Transition from Foundation (2016 Edition) to Foundation (2020 Edition)
The transition to the new Foundation Module had been forecast for Easter this year. Given the unusual circumstances we find ourselves in this deadline has been pushed back to the end of the Connexional year. However, this date will be held under review and work will be undertaken to ensure that no District or Circuit is disadvantaged by the new transition date, once clearer guidance from central Government is issued.

To support Districts with the delayed transition, Foundation (2016 Edition) material will continue to be available to order until 31st August from Methodist Publishing.

The Connexional safeguarding team remain committed to ensuring that good quality train the trainers sessions are provided prior to trainers delivering the course. To date, many districts have made good local arrangements and this training has already been delivered and in others they are now working on contingencies for training to take place once social isolation ends.

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