At the London Diocesan Fund (LDF) we seek to do everything we can to support the mission and growth of the Church of England in London. The Diocese of London comprises of c400 parishes north of the River Thames and within the M25 motorway.
Safeguarding is an integral part of the life and ministry of the Church. The Diocese of London is committed to the 'whole church' approach to safeguarding adopted by the Church of England which aims to ensure a consistent approach as we work to create a safer culture. Everyone involved in church activities across the Diocese and who may come into contact with children, young people and adults has a role to play as we take steps to maintain a safer environment for all.
The post holder will be expected to work with the Safeguarding Manager to:
Act as the contact point for their episcopal area(s) for those in the Church and community, including statutory agencies, who can assist the Bishop of London, area bishops and senior staff in discharging their responsibilities for safeguarding children and adults who may be at risk of abuse or neglect.
Advise on the implementation of diocesan safeguarding policy and diocesan strategic safeguarding initiatives in their episcopal area(s). Remaining up to date with the development of government policy, Church of England policy and practice guidance and to enable the provision of information and advice, ensuring the Diocese maintains the highest standards of protection for children and adults who may be at risk of abuse or neglect. Providing advice to the Bishop of London and the area bishops, archdeacons, clergy and laity as appropriate on procedures to be followed when safeguarding concerns arise.
Work as a key member of the Diocesan Safeguarding Team (DST), alongside the Director of HR and Safeguarding and the Safeguarding Manager, supporting the diocese on the next stage of our safeguarding journey, ensuring that we continue to build a positive safeguarding culture and that all worshipping communities and church-based activities within the Diocese are safe spaces.
Provide safeguarding performance management information for episcopal areas to the Diocesan Safeguarding Steering Group (DSSG) on behalf of all the parishes and other partner organisations in the Diocese advising, supporting, progressing and promoting multi-agency approach to safeguarding across all agencies as part of the work of the DSSG.
Ensure that parishes and all agencies in the episcopal area(s) for which you are the named advisor, work to up to date policies and procedures governing safeguarding and, under the direction of the Safeguarding Manager, undertake assigned work to ensure that these are reviewed and approved by the DSSG regularly, in accordance with the most up to date House of Bishops Practice Guidance, legislation, subsequent statutory guidance, and case law and safeguarding review recommendations.
Deliver quality assurance and safeguarding practice improvement which can be evidenced across the Diocese.
Provide professional safeguarding advice and undertake pro-active relationship management to ensure parishes and worshipping communities are aware of their responsibilities in relation to safeguarding children and adults who may be at risk of abuse or neglect; to keep them abreast of policy and practice developments.
Under the direction of the Safeguarding Manager to undertake strategic safeguarding projects and improvement work including polices and projects in line with identified business needs and operational plans. Developing initiatives to support the effective implementation across your designated area in order to ensure excellent safeguarding practices across the Diocese.
Work collegiately to deliver the objectives within the LDF operational plan. Through casework, to promote the Implementation of information sharing protocols and relationship/ membership of local safeguarding boards.
Develop working arrangements within the team to ensure robust systems are in place to track calls, manage cases, and ensure effective training delivery, enabling reporting against key performance indicators in relation to the operational plans are the development of good safeguarding practice in the Diocese through advice, information and training.
Assist the Diocese in the safe recruitment of staff and volunteers and in its use of the Disclosure and Barring Service; to advise the Bishop of London and parishes on the assessment of risk. Respond to complaints and matters relating to Clergy Disciplinary Matters (CDM) in accordance with guidance.
Management of contracts in relation to training, listeners and projects as allocated. Line management of temporary or administrative staff as directed.
Respond to concerns and allegations of harm, working with statutory agencies; and protection of those who work with children and vulnerable adults.
Provide advice on all safeguarding matters, ensuring the DST is operating in line with the law, government guidance and national practice guidance from the House of Bishops. Ensure that safeguarding procedures are carried out throughout the process, with appropriate liaison with statutory agencies.
Ensure appropriate support for alleged victims and their families and alleged perpetrators and their families, throughout an investigation and thereafter.
Maintain practices standards in all case work, ensuring six key principles underpin all adult safeguarding work, human rights and have due regard to mental capacity and acting in the best interests of those in need of support. Supporting practice and policy development around case management safeguarding processes.
Work with individuals who come to our attention to ensure appropriate risk assessment and risk management plans to set boundaries within a church setting; for those who are convicted of an offence, or where there are continuing unresolved concerns regarding risks to others. Professional support for clergy, paid staff and volunteers who may have concerns about pastoral situations in which they find themselves.
Work with children’s and adult social services, public protection, HM prison and probation services, MAPPA, MARAC and others as necessary, including attending appropriate strategy meetings, case conferences as arranged by statutory agencies or requested by the Safeguarding Manager or Director of HR and Safeguarding If appropriate, to prepare parish officers for such meetings and attend with them.
Ensure that referrals to the DBS for barring from work with children or vulnerable adults and reports to the Charities Commission are submitted in line with statutory guidance.
Ensure that the Bishop of London, area bishop, archdeacon and Director of HR and Safeguarding and Safeguarding Manager are always informed when an allegation of abuse is made against a church officer. To manage case work within legal parameters and to seek appropriate permissions from the registrar and bishops as required in relation to sensitive issues and the CDM.
Advise and guide in the absence of the Safeguarding Manager, the Bishop of London, area bishops, archdeacons, clergy and parish officers as necessary, about contact, if any, with the alleged victim and/or the person making the accusation, who may not be the victim, and the families involved about practical arrangements which may be required for the alleged perpetrator and his or her family about arrangements to support congregations on the future employment or redeployment possibilities.
Oversee the delivery of the annual safeguarding training programme for clergy, Parish Safeguarding Officers, paid staff, PCC members and volunteers. To develop relevant training specifications for the training content of the annual training programme implementation of safeguarding practice in a church environment, including practice to limit opportunities for abuse and to diminish the risks of wrongful accusations being made.
Evaluate, review and monitor the training programme with relevant staff and providers delivering commissioned services.
Undertake as appropriate continuing training and professional development in the safeguarding field.
Maintain professional registration is appropriate i.e., as a social worker or with an equivalent professional body, as required for ongoing practice.
Extensive experience of safeguarding of children and adults including experience of undertaking and contributing to policy, practice development and implementation.
A social work qualification recognised by the Health and Care Professional Council, or a similar qualification in a related area/profession, or experienced.
Specific training in a variety of aspects of child or adult safeguarding.
Knowledge of Safeguarding adults and children policy, procedures and legislation.
Experience of child and/or adult safeguarding work as a senior practitioner and/or manager.
Knowledge and experience of risk assessment/risk management. Ability to chair multi-agency risk meetings.
Knowledge of processes such as MAPPA, MARAC and PREVENT.
Practitioner/manager experience of working with victims or survivors of abuse, including adults with mental health issues.
Experience of working with a range of statutory and non-statutory organisations in managing or contributing to safeguarding, including managing allegations against people in positions of trust and the management of those who may pose a risk.
Ability to work sensitively with survivors, those who are subject to allegations and/or those that may pose a risk.
Be a self-starter, working on your own initiative and demonstrate an ability to handle confidential data sensitively, ensuring complete compliance with data handling policies and processes.
Demonstrable ability to be part of and contribute to a wider team as part of a large national institution and to work collegially with specialist and non-specialist colleagues. In sympathy with the aims of the Church of England.
Strong verbal communications skills and ability to produce clear written records and reports. (including Board and Committee level reports).
Have exceptional people skills and the ability to build positive partnerships and relationships with key stakeholders.
Experience of supporting operational and strategic goals, demonstrate impact, and ensure effective quality assurance practices.
The LDF exists to support the mission of the Church of England in London. The principal activity of the London Diocesan Fund is to operationally and practically serve and support the parishes and people within the Diocese of London, enabling the vision that every Londoner will encounter the love of God in Jesus Christ.