Child Protection Policy

The introduction of this Child Protection Policy is a clear signal by Smile to ensure that all the necessary steps are taken to protect from harm, those children and young people who participate in football at all levels.

 The Policy establishes Smile’s position, role and responsibilities and, together with the procedures set out internally and the Football Association’s Child Protection Procedures and practices handbook, clarifies what is expected of its’ employees.

 It highlights the importance placed by Smile on the protection of children and young people.

 Every child and young person who plays football should be able to participate in an enjoyable and safe environment and be protected from abuse. This is the responsibility of every adult involved in football.

 We recognise, however, that child abuse is also very emotive and difficult subject. It is important to understand the feelings involved but not to allow them to interfere with our judgement about any action to be taken.

 Smile recognises its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of all children and young people by protecting them from physical, sexual, financial or emotional harm and from neglect or bullying.

 It is determined to meet its obligation to ensure that those employees, providing football opportunities for children and young people do so, to the highest possible standard of care.

 Clear practices and procedures, in addition to a detailed training programme already under way, will ensure that everyone knows exactly what is expected of them in relation to the protection of children and young people within football.

 It is essential that this children and young people attracted to and participating in football are able to do so in a quality, safe and enjoyable environment.

 In striving to attain this, Smile will: 

  • Provide ongoing development and training opportunities to all employees

  • Vet all current and future employees who have direct contact with children and young people, through reference checks

  • Work with the Football Association and any other relevant organisation to ensure that it is working to the highest possible standard to ensure the protection of children and young people.

 The aims of Smile’s Child Protection Policy are: 

  • To develop a positive and pro-active position to best protect all children and young people who play football, enabling them to participate in an enjoyable and safe environment

  • To deliver quality assured child protection training in conjunction with the Football Association

  • To demonstrate best practice in the area of child protection

  • To help to promote ethics and high standards throughout football  

The key principles underpinning this Policy are that: 

  • The child’s welfare is, and must always be, the paramount consideration

  • All children and young people have a right to be protected from abuse regardless of their age, gender, disability culture, language, racial origin, religious beliefs or sexual identity

  • All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately

Working in partnership with children and young people and their parents/cares is essential. Smile is committed to working with the local Social Services Department in accordance with their procedures.

 Any employee who has a concern relating to the field of Child Protection should refer to the Football Association’s Child protection and Practices Handbook that can be found on the following link:
FA Child Protection Procedures


Smile, through confirming this document, has indicated its determination to do everything within its power to ensure that children and young people can participate in all forms of football activity and do so with their safety being of paramount importance. 

It is essential that this document is representative of a process of continual improvement in the area of child protection within football. It is for adults engaged in football activities to promote good practice and procedures, whilst being ever vigilant and aware of their responsibilities towards the children and young people in their care.