20/04/2020- Safeguarding/Welfare

BF Club Welfare Officer Communication

This message is based on a recent communication to all club welfare officers. Please read carefully as there are some updates, particularly in regards to accessing training during lockdown.

The safeguarding and wellbeing of all members still remains to be important for all of us within the fencing community, and this includes conducting a thorough “spring-clean” of the Club Welfare Officer register and updating it with as much information as possible from the BF membership database.

The updated BF Club Welfare Officer register can be found here .

Please check it carefully and email [email protected]  if there are any errors. If you have attended the required welfare training and this is not reflected on the register this is because the certificates are not uploaded to your membership profile in the BF Membership Platform.

BF has created a traffic light system to allow for easy identification of areas of non compliance:

  • Green – fully compliant
  • Amber – missing courses and/or evidence of your criminal records check (DBS/PVG
  • Red – not a member/ missing all courses


Online welfare training

In preparation for a return to fencing this is an excellent time for clubs and club welfare officers to conduct some general housekeeping and bring themselves up to date with the training requirements for their roles. If your certificates have expired (they are only valid for 3 years) or you have never attended these courses, we have provided online options as a temporary measure to allow our community to continue training whilst in lockdown.

Safeguarding & Protecting Children

During this period of lockdown, BF will be accepting online training for UK Coaching Safeguarding and Protecting Children in Sport.

BF is also in the final stages of producing its own online SPC course and will be making an announcement as to its launch date shortly.


En Guarde Ready

The online welfare officers EGR ready course is almost ready to be launched.  This is the basic course that talks you through the templates, guidelines, policies and procedures (all found in the welfare zone of the website) a club welfare officer (and club) will have an awareness and understanding of as part of the clubs’ best practice.  If you have not attended an EGR course please take the opportunity to do the online version as soon as it is launched.


Time to Listen

As there is no formal CPSU Time to Listen which is suitable for delivery during lockdown, BF is running our own version using online video conferencing mechanisms. Please email [email protected] to be booked onto a course. Please note that whilst passing this course will make you a fully qualified Club Welfare Officer for fencing it will not be transferable to other environments.

For those of you with current valid Time to Listen qualifications please do take the opportunity to access online resources to supplement your learning eg CPSU resources.


Uploading Certificates to the Membership Platform

Once you receive the certificates please upload them to your BF membership profile in the correct sections (see below) and email the BF Volunteer Workforce Manager to have the register updated.

Where to upload welfare certificates

Login to the system and go to your profile page.

Click on ‘Safeguarding’ in the vertical menu.

For all mandatory training eg SPC, EGR, TTL and equivalents select ‘Safeguarding Qualification’

Select the qualification type from the dropdown as follows:

Option 1 Safeguarding Qualification

  • Safeguarding and Protecting Children in Sport: SPC in Sport and Child Well-Being and Protection in Sport (Scotland) .
  • Welfare 1 = EGR
  • Welfare 2 = Time to Listen (or BF Club Welfare Officer or NI equivalent). NB SCO safe hands 2 will no longer be available once the new CWPO training in Scotland is released

For any other course undertaken select ‘Other Safeguarding Qualification’

It is crucial that you upload your certificates to your BF membership, as this is the information that we rely on to update the register – currently 90% on the published register are in red because there is no evidence in the system of attending any welfare courses. If you upload any certificates please email [email protected] as that will speed up the process to get your certificates approved and the register updated,


Criminal Record Checks (DBS certificates)

The register notes any missing or expired DBS certificates

If you have a valid DBS certificate and signed up to the online update service, as requested at the time of application, please email [email protected] the certificate number beginning 00 and permission to check it online. We will then make the check and update the register and your BF membership profile accordingly.

If you have a DBS certificate and have not signed up to the online update service, then we will still need to see the original certificate. In the current circumstances this can be done by sending a scanned copy (both sides) to [email protected] or arranging a time with us for an online video call (by emailing [email protected]).

Please do not send certificates to the office.


DBS applications

We will not be sending out any DBS application forms as we have now moved to an online system.

All registered fencing clubs have been emailed the details to register for this service (Vibrant Nation) and you should contact your club to organise your DBS application via this method as soon as possible. More information for clubs here.


BF Membership

It is mandatory (and an industry wide best practice standard), that you are a member of your National Governing Body – British Fencing. The minimum level is Supporter and ensures:

  • we have confirmation that you are bound by the BF Policies and Codes of Conduct
  • you are covered under the BF public liability insurance policy

Please note: If you do not become a BF member, or your membership has expired you will not be on the published club welfare register.


Welfare Officer Email Addresses

Where possible set up a generic “welfare@xxx” email address to be used by  the welfare officer, this can then be widely published on the club’s website and posters at the club. It not only shields personal email addresses from the public domain but also allows continuity of access to the email should the current welfare officer choose to step down from their volunteer role as welfare officer.

Please let the [email protected] know if you have updated your email address, so the register and mailing system can be updated.


Coaches as Welfare Officers

Whilst BF understands the difficulty in sometimes finding a volunteer to act as a club welfare officer, it is not advisable or best practise for the club coach to take on this role.

If you are unable to find a volunteer to act as a welfare officer,  BF would recommend that if at all possible to try to share a welfare officer from another local club or approach your Regional Welfare Officer and ask that their details are used as the welfare contact. This should be prominently displayed within the club environment.


Welfare Zone

Please take your time to explore the Welfare Zone on the BF website, please take your time to explore it fully as there is a lot of useful information on it.


COVID-19 Information on the BF website

During this time the health and wellbeing of our community is of the utmost importance – please continue to follow the official guidance and look after yourself and each other.

For information and advice on COVID-19 please visit our dedicated page here.

COVID-19 Advice and guidance to the fencing community

COVID-19 Guidance for coaches

COVID-19 Guidance for clubs

Are you OK?


(Please note that the contents of this post was sent as an email to all BF registered Club Welfare Officers. If you are a club Welfare Officer and you did not receive the email, please check your details in the BF Membership Platform and email [email protected])

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