Kildare Counselling Service
Statement on Child Safeguarding
Kildare Counselling Service (KCS) is committed to ensuring that minors and vulnerable clients are afforded the most appropriate services possible by those working in the centre and that all practitioners adhere to best practice and statutory obligations in relation to child protection.
KCS strives to make sure that children are protected and kept safe from harm while they are engaging with staff and practitioners working from the KCS centre.
Within that context, pracitioners working from KCS are required to strictly adhere to Children First Guidelines (2017) and their statutory obligations as outlined in the Children First Act, 2015.
We would draw particular attention to the following:
- The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child 1992.
- The Child Care Act 2001, Youth Work Act 2002,
- The HSE Trust in Care Policy 2005 and
- Childrens First Guidelines, 2017, and the Children First Act, 2015.
KCS has developed a full Child Safeguarding Statement and a display version for our centre. These have been developed in line with requirements under the Children First Act 2015, Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children (2017), and Tusla’s Child Safeguarding: A Guide for Policy, Procedure and Practice. In addition to the procedures listed in our risk assessment, the following procedures support our intention to safeguard children while they are availing of our service:
- Procedure for the management of allegations of abuse or misconduct against workers/volunteers/practitioners of a child availing of our service;
- Procedure for the safe recruitment, selection and vetting of workers, volunteers and independent practitioners who work with children;
- Procedure for provision of and access to child safeguarding training and information, including the identification of the occurrence of harm;
- Procedure for the reporting of child protection or welfare concerns to Tusla;
- Procedure for maintaining a list of the persons in the service who are mandated persons;
- Procedure for appointing a relevant person.
Our full Child Safeguarding Satement is available to the general public upon request. Please use the form on our contact page to request a copy.
Child Abuse may be defined as ‘Harming children by indirect act or failure to provide proper care or both’. Children in that context are considered minors under 18 years of age. KCS presents here the categories of abuse and significant harm’ as set out in the Children First Document as aguidance for practitioners.
Types of Abuse
- Physical Abuse: any form of non-accidental injury, which results from willful or neglectful failure to protect a child.
- Sexual Abuse: When a child is used by another person for his or her gratification or sexual arousal, or that of another person. (para 3.2.1; 3.3.1; 3.4.1; 3.5.1)
- Emotional Abuse: When a child’s need for affection, approval, consistency and security are not met. Emotional abuse is normally to be found in the relationship between caregiver and a child.
- Neglect: An omission, where the child suffers harm or impairment of development by being deprived of food, clothing, warmth, hygiene, intellectual stimulation, supervision and safety, attachment to and affection from adults or medical care.
- Bullying: Can be defined as repeated aggression, be it verbal, psychological or physical, which is conducted, by an individual or group against others. (Children First, 2017: 107).
Harm can be defined as the ill-treatment or the impairment of health or development of a child, whether it is significant is determined by his/her health and development as compared to that which could be reasonably be expected of a child of similar age (Children First, para.3.3.2).
Points of Note for Practitioners
Practitioners working from the KCS centre are expected to only ever act within their scope of practice. They are expected to operate within the supportive framework of Clinical Supervision and within that context to seek advice and make properly informed judgement where suspicions of abuse or neglect arise or dealing with cases of abuse or neglect and always to act int he best interests of the chidl and within the legal frameworks in place at any time.
Should you wish to raise a child protection concern or complaint about any aspect of the service you or your child have received or are receiving at KCS, please contact our Designated Liaison Person and Child Protection Office, Linda McGuire at [email protected]