Safeguarding Policy  Ensuring a Safe Church for All
“The Church of Scotland has a deep concern for the wholeness and wellbeing of each individual. Through its Congregations, working together with the Safeguarding Service and statutory agencies, the Church seeks to safeguard the welfare of all people who come into contact with the Church and its services. The Gospel proclaims that it’s the responsibility of everyone within the fellowship of the Church to prevent harm, be it physical, sexual or emotional, and we will always seek to reduce risk. The Church’s commitment to safeguarding reminds us that God cares passionately about the welfare and wellbeing of all people.”
Church of Scotland Safeguarding Policy Statement, 2010

Safeguarding and St Matthew’s Safeguarding Team

It goes without saying that we want to feel safe wherever we are and, naturally, when we go to Church or take part in some of its many activities.

The safeguarding role is to make sure that we have done all we can to ensure the safety of those who may be vulnerable within our Church community. These include children and vulnerable adults. The term vulnerable adults is defined in legislation and for our purposes it is defined as those adults who are supported by the Pastoral Care Team and those who children who take part in activities such as the Junior Church or Jam (Jesus and Me group).

How do we provide this support?
– Where volunteers are needed to provide support to children or vulnerable adults, we ensure that the necessary checks are made (Protection of Vulnerable Groups – PVG)
– We work with leaders of the Church teams to meet with the volunteers to make them aware of what is expected
– Through the Presbytery Training Co-ordinator we provide safeguarding training for volunteers which is informative and enjoyable
– We also provide general support and advice in St Matthew’s
The Church of Scotland has a Safeguarding Service in Edinburgh. It provides expert advice and support to Safeguarding Teams in every congregation in Scotland.

St Matthew’s Safeguarding Committee
Our Safeguarding Team comprises Andy Turnbull (Safeguarding Co-ordinator;, Fiona Bruce (Session Clerk) and Rev Marc Bircham (Interim Moderator). We meet regularly throughout the year, reporting as required to Kirk Session and Presbytery and on an “as needed” basis to address any issues or concerns.

If you suspect or witness harm or abuse, or if it is reported to you….” then please contact the Safeguarding co-ordinator or one of the committee.