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Rough Sleeper Outreach and Support

Project 16:15 Safeguarding Policy and Procedures

  1. Introduction

          This Policy covers the activities of Project 16:15, relevant to:

Project 16:15 Homeless Breakfast delivery and Outreach

Project 16:15 Homeless Football Team

​​​​​​​Ptoject 16:15 Community Outreach Vehicle 

Project 16:15 safeguarding lead in respect to this document is Michelle Clinton.

Project 16:15 makes a positive contribution to a strong and safe community and recognises the right of every individual to stay safe, to be treated with respect and recognised as a person equal in value to all.

Project 16:15 can come into contact with vulnerable adults through the following activities:

  • Social Interaction
  • Community Care Projects
  • Visiting and assisting other organisations

This policy seeks to ensure that Project 16:15 undertakes its responsibilities with regard to protection of vulnerable adults and will respond to concerns appropriately. The policy establishes a framework to support all those who work as active volunteers within its programmes and structure, and who are actively involved, through participation under the banner of Project 16:15 or its linked outreach and community Projects.

This policy does not cover any individual who by right of choice, chooses to carry out similar activities to any covered or carried out by Project 16:15, regardless of whether or not that individual involves themselves in social media discussion or has simply joined a social media group. Unless that person or persons actively becomes a participating volunteer or member under the banner of Project 16:15 or any of its affiliated activities.

      2.  Definitions

Safeguarding is about embedding practices throughout any organisation or group, to ensure the protection of children and / or vulnerable adults wherever possible. In contrast, child and adult protection is about responding to circumstances that arise.

Abuse is a selfish act of oppression and injustice, or an exploitation and manipulation. This can be caused by those inflicting harm or those who fail to act to prevent harm. Abuse is not restricted to any socio-economic group, gender or culture.

It can take several forms, including the following:

    • Physical abuse
    • Sexual abuse
    • Emotional abuse
    • Bullying
    • Neglect
    • Financial (or material) abuse

Definition of a child

A child is under the age of 18 (as defined in the United Nations convention on the Rights of a Child).

Definition of Vulnerable Adults

A vulnerable adult is a person aged 18 years or over who may be unable to take care of themselves or protect themselves from harm or from being exploited.

This may include a person who:

  • Is elderly and frail
  • Has a mental illness including dementia
  • Has a physical or sensory disability
  • Has a learning disability
  • Has a severe physical illness
  • Is a substance misuser
  • Is homeless

Definition of volunteer (in regard to this document)

A volunteer is any person who becomes actively involved in the operations and outreach of Project 16:15, or its affiliated projects. And who by doing so may encounter a vulnerable person as part of Project 16:15 or affiliated projects.

A volunteer is not by definition a person or persons who choose to follow or comment within social media, or who choose to act alone or in conjunction with any other organisation.

       3. Responsibilities

All volunteers have responsibility to follow the guidance laid out in this policy and related policies, and to pass on any welfare concerns using the required procedures.

We expect all volunteers to promote good practice by being an excellent role model, contribute to discussions about safeguarding and to positively involve people in developing safe practices.

All volunteers who choose to operate under the banner of Project 16:15 or any of its affiliated projects, do so in full knowledge of its foundation principles and agree to not deviate from them.

Additional specific responsibilities

The Safeguard Lead has a responsibility to ensure:

  • The policy is in place and appropriate
  • The policy is accessible
  • The policy is implemented
  • The policy is monitored and reviewed
  • Ensure volunteers have access to appropriate training/information
  • Promoting the welfare of vulnerable adults
  • Receive volunteers concerns about safeguarding and respond to all seriously, swiftly and appropriately

       4.  Implementation Stages

The scope of this Safeguarding Policy is broad ranging and in practice, it will be implemented via a range of policies and procedures within the organisation. These include:

  • Whistleblowing –ability to inform on other volunteers/ practices within the organisation
  • Grievance and disciplinary procedures – to address breaches of procedures/ policies
  • Health and Safety policy, including lone working procedures, mitigating risk to volunteers and clients
  • Equal Opportunities policy– ensuring safeguarding procedures are in line with this policy, in particular around discriminatory abuse and ensuring that the safeguarding policy and procedures are not discriminatory
  • Data protection (how records are stored and access to those records)
  • Confidentiality (or limited confidentiality policy) ensuring that service users are aware of your duty to disclose
  • Staff induction
  • Staff training

Safe recruitment

Blank Canvas Mission will ensure safe recruitment through the following processes:

  • Ensuring that this Safeguarding statement is accessible to all
  • Volunteer or role descriptions for all roles involving contact with vulnerable adults will contain reference to safeguarding responsibilities.
  • Volunteer agreement/selection is based on formal processes not written application
  • Information where necessary regarding any person wishing to be actively involved as a volunteer, will be sought from other relevant agencies. 
  • No volunteer will be involved in any area of operation until all relevant processes have been undertaken, in line with the role they are wishing to be involved with.

Service delivery contracting and sub-contracting:

  • There will be systematic checking of safeguarding arrangements of partner organisations, and all other agencies/organisation
  • s we may need to or be required to refer vulnerable people to.

Safeguarding will be a fixed agenda item on any oversight reporting meetings.


               5.  Communications training and support for staff

Project 16:15 will aim to commit resources for induction, training of volunteer’s effective communications and support mechanisms in relation to Safeguarding

Induction for those wishing to be active volunteers will include:

  • Discussion of the Safeguarding Policy (and confirmation of understanding)
  • Discussion of other relevant policies if required
  • Ensure familiarity with reporting processes, the role of the Safe Guard Lead (and who acts in their absence)
  • Initial training on safeguarding including safe working practices, understanding adult vulnerability and adult safeguarding 


All volunteers who, through their role, are in contact with

vulnerable adults will have access to any relevant safeguarding training. Sources and types of training will include:

  • Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults

Communications and discussion of safeguarding issues

Commitment to the following communication methods will ensure effective communication of safeguarding issues and practice:

  • Team meetings
  • One to one meeting (formal or informal),

Other aspects of communications may where appropriate include:

  • Participation in multi-agency safeguarding procedures and meetings in order to be involved in adult protection procedures
  • Participation in joint client visits
  • Provision of a clear and effective reporting procedure which encourages reporting of concerns.
  • Encouraging open discussion (e.g. during supervision and team meetings) to identify and barriers to reporting so that they can be addressed.
  • Inclusion of safeguarding as a discussion prompt during supervision meetings/ appraisals to encourage reflection


We recognise that involvement in situations where there is risk or actual harm can be stressful for volunteers concerned. The mechanisms in place to offer support include:

  • Debriefing support for all active volunteers so that they can reflect on the issues they have dealt with.
  • Seeking further support as appropriate e.g. access to counselling.
  • Daily concern and reporting sheets to be completed by all.

               6.  Professional boundaries

Project 16:15 expects volunteers to protect the professional integrity of themselves and the group.

The following professional boundaries must be adhered to:

Giving and receiving gifts from clients:

  • Project 16:15 does not allow any volunteers to give gifts to or receive gifts from clients, whilst operating as a volunteer, unless those gifts are incorporated as part of a planned activity, sanctioned by the committee, in line with one of its affiliated projects. Or an agreement has been reached following discussion with the committee or a senior member of one of the affiliated projects.

Staff contact with user groups.

Personal friendships between a volunteer and a client who is a current service user is to be approached with caution. The varied nature of our core principles and the projects carried out will mean that friendships may be formed, and existing ones strengthened.

We cannot be aloof and separated, yet stand for equal value and self worth, especially with any individual who chooses to be involved with our social and care-based activities. However, the following guidelines should be adhered to:


  • We do not encourage any active volunteer to enter into a personal relationship with a person who has been a service user, in any capacity over the past 12 months.
  • Project 16:15 prohibits passing on any person’s personal contact details, without their express and recorded consent.
  • Selling to or buying items from a service user/client is not allowed
  • Accepting responsibility for any valuables on behalf of a client is prohibited
  • Accepting money as a gift/ Borrowing money from any service user is prohibited
  • Project 16:15 prohibits accepting gifts/ rewards or hospitality from organisation as an inducement for either doing/ not doing something in their official capacity
  • Be cautious of personal contact with clients.

If anyone fails to adhere to the guidelines and policies laid out, they can be removed as a volunteer/active member of Project 16:15 or relevant affiliation. Also, should it be deemed necessary other agencies will be informed and involved with any possible further action. ​​​​​​​


                   7.  Reporting

The process outlined below details the stages involved in raising and reporting safeguarding concerns within Project 16:15

Where possible Communicate your concerns with Admin

If unable to do so, then address concerns with Committee/ Safe Guard Lead

If not satisfied with response take concerns to other relevant agencies and seek advice

Keep a record of all conversations and incidents

Complete the Local Authority Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Incident Report Form if required and submit to the local authority within 24 hours of making a contact

Ensure that feedback from the Local Authority is received and their response recorded


​​​​​​​                      8.  Allegations Management

Project 16:15 recognises its duty to report concerns or allegations against its volunteers within the organisation or by a professional from another organisation.

The process for raising and dealing with allegations is as follows:

First step: Any volunteer from project 16:15 or affiliated projects is required to report any concerns in the first instance to the Safeguard Lead or group Committee. A written record of the concern will be completed.

Second step: contact local authority or Project coordinator for advice, should you feel it appropriate

Third step: – follow the advice provided

​​​​​​​Project 16:15 will where necessary fulfil its legal duty to report any concerns about unsafe practice by any of its volunteers or associated agencies to the relevant authority.


                      ​​​​​​​9.  Monitoring

Project 16:15 will monitor the following Safeguarding aspects:

  • Safe recruitment practices
  • Any relevant References applied for volunteers
  • Records made and kept of supervision sessions
  • Training – register/ record of volunteer training on vulnerable adult protection
  • Monitoring whether concerns are being reported and actioned
  • Checking that policies are up to date and relevant
  • Reviewing the current reporting procedure in place
  • Presence and action of Designated team member responsible for Safeguarding is in post


                      10.  Managing information

Information will be gathered, recorded and stored in accordance with the following policies:

  • Data Protection Policy
  • Confidentiality Policy

All volunteers must be aware that they have a professional duty to share information with other agencies in order to safeguard vulnerable adults, where the public interest in safeguarding vulnerable adults may override confidentiality interests.

However, information will be shared on a need to know basis only, as judged by the Safeguard Lead/Committee

All volunteers must be aware that they cannot promise service users or their families that they will keep secrets.

                      11.  Communicating and reviewing the policy

Project 16:15  will make clients aware of the Safeguarding Policy through the following means:

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