Providing Child Safeguarding training and information in ELC and SAC services is an integral part of keeping children safe from harm. ELC and SAC services, as providers of relevant services, are required, under the Children First Act, 2015 to provide child safeguarding training to their workers. Therefore, services should have a Child Safeguarding Training Strategy to ensure that all staff are aware of their role and responsibilities under both the Children First Act, 2015 and the Children First National Guidance, 2017,
Due to the current demand on training, it may not always be possible for all staff to attend face to face Always Children First Child Safeguarding Training. In order to support all staff, there are plenty of training resources and supports available to ensure that all staff working in ELC and SAC services work with a child centred approach allowing all to children grow, develop and achieve their full potential and take appropriate steps to safeguard children.
‘Child safeguarding is ensuring safe practice and appropriate responses by worker and volunteers to concerns about the safety or welfare of children, should these arise. Child safeguarding is about protecting the child from harm, promoting their welfare and in doing so creating an environment which enables children and young people to grow, develop and achieve their full potential’
Tusla Child Safeguarding: A Guide for Policy, Procedure and Practice
Some of these resources and supports are available below:
The Tusla Always Children First eLearning Programme
The Tusla Always Children First eLearning Programme is the minimum child safeguarding training that all staff members in ELC and SAC should have. This programme covers topics including:
The Tusla Always Children First eLearning Programme can be accessed here.
Tusla Children First Mandated Person: Role and Responsibilities eLearning Programme
The Tusla Children First Mandated Person: Role and Responsibilities eLearning Programme provides information on and understanding of the role and responsibilities of mandated persons as outlined in the Children First Act, 2015. The key learning outcomes of this programme are:
Child Safeguarding Training in ELC and SAC Services May 2022
The Tusla Children First Mandated Person: Role and Responsibilities eLearning Programme can be accessed here.
The Children First National Guidance, 2017
The Children First National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children, 2017, describes the four main types of abuse and sets out the steps which should be taken to ensure that the child or young person is protected from harm. The Guidance also outlines the roles of the main statutory bodies involved in child welfare and protection: Tusla – Child and Family Agency, and An Garda Síochána. It contains details of how to report a concern about a child and what happens once the report is received by Tusla.
The Children First National Guidance can be accessed here.
The Child Safeguarding Resource Document – Child Safeguarding Statement, Policy and Procedures; Guidance for Early Learning and Care and School Aged Childcare Services in Ireland
This document is a resource for ELC and SAC services who are developing, reviewing or updating their Child Safeguarding Statement and associated procedures. The document contains templates, supports and guidance to support the development of robust child safeguarding statements, policies and procedures that will keep children safe from harm.
The Child Safeguarding Resource Document can be accessed here.
National Child Safeguarding Programme Info Blasts
The National Child Safeguarding Programme regularly produce ‘Info Blasts’ to support ELC and SAC understand their child safeguarding obligations. These ‘Info Blasts’ are published regularly on a variety of child safeguarding topics
The National Child Safeguarding Programme Info Blasts can be accessed here.
Children First Child Protection Revision Webinar
This webinar was developed to highlight the key elements of the face-to-face Always Children First Foundation. Its purpose is to serve as a revision resource for ELC practitioners, SAC practitioners and Childminders and can be found here.
In addition to the resources outlined above, there are many more supports and resources available on the National Child Safeguarding Programme website – www.childsafeguardingelc.ie