Dear Parent/Carer

The attached is a copy of a regular bulletin sent to all registered clubs in the Durham FA area and highlights key issues in the world of safeguarding and the respect agenda for football.  Trimdon United Juniors FC takes this very seriously and wants to make sure that when your child comes to play for us they enjoy themselves in a positive, supportive and safe club environment.
Thank you for all your support and helping us make the 2018/19 season one of the most memorable of our history and really looking forward to the same in 2019/20.

You can read it below, or download the original PDF Welfare Bulletin - July 2019 here.

Best wishes

Andy Coulthard 
Club Chairman and Welfare Officer
07834 147 207


•Taking Images in Children’s Football - Photos and Video
•Safeguarding Validation Visits to Clubs – Prime Issues
•Criminal Records Checks - CRCs (also known as DBS Checks)
•Social Media
•Racist Incidents – Youth Football
•Club Support
•Christmas Competition Winner
Durham County FA Welfare Officer Bulletin


Taking Images in Children’s Football - Photos and Video

The County FA still get reports from spectators, in particular, about people taking Photos and Video at matches.
Would you please ask your team coaches and managers to remind parents/carers that permission from the opposition manager/coach is required before taking images in case the other team do not wish photos/video to be taken or there is a particular child on the opposing team who should not be subject to any photo’s or video e.g. a child in care or subject of adoption and publishing any photo’s/video could lead to their identification.
Consent must be sought by the team Manager/Coach of your club – and not individual parents/carers approaching the opposition coach.
Reminding parents/carers about the issue of consent will certainly help to minimise future complaints.
The FA guidance about this issue is not rule or regulation so it is not possible to stop someone taking images in a public place if they wish to do so; however, if there was a concern felt about the person taking images for any reason, then the police should to be called.
FA Guidance can be obtained here


Safeguarding Validation Visits to Clubs – Prime Issues

One prime issue emerging from these visits is the need to ensure everyone at the club; notably, parents, are fully aware of your name and contact point(s) as Welfare Officer should someone have a concern about an issue within the club.
This information can be shared through club social media channels and/or by issuing a card or sheet with details written in.
You can also, whenever present at training or a fixture, circulate round to link up with parents who are new to you.
Providing everyone with information about ‘whistle-blowing’ is also important. Whilst a number of parents were aware of whistle-blowing in their workplace they were not really aware of it within grassroots football. Whistle-blowing would be an option should a report/concern about possible malpractice/misconduct within the club not be dealt with by the club.
The usual channel to make a whistle-blowing report would be to Durham County FA on 0191 3872929-Option 1 or email .
Alternatively, the person making the report could link direct to the FA on 0800 169 1863 ext. 6300 or 6400 or email . A report could also be made to the police or social care services for children or adults.
Sharing information to everyone at the club – not just parents - as per above will ensure awareness across the club and be reassuring to all involved that they know how to report and who to. Some clubs send reminder information out on an annual basis which is good practice. It is also important to send our information updates when new Welfare Officers are part of the club or when an existing Welfare Officer is replaced.
Durham County FA Welfare Officer Bulletin Safeguarding Validation Visits to Clubs – Prime Issues
A Feedback Report will be sent through to the club Secretary following any Validation Visit completed by Durham County FA staff (accompanied usually by a Council/Board Member). The Feedback Report is an important document produced by Durham County FA to let the club know how they have done and if there are any issues that need addressing; for example, relating to CRCs or nominated team coaches not being present at training or coaches getting directly involved in games with the players/children etc. The club are required to acknowledge and reply back to Durham County FA about the content of the Validation Visit Feedback Report.
The attached Good Practice Guide’ for coaches is something you may find useful and If you need any advice about any particular coaching practice at the club you are not sure about – please contact Andy Brown here at Durham County FA 0191 3972929- Option 4 then Option 2 and Andy will be pleased to offer advice and support.


Criminal Records Checks - CRCs (also known as DBS Checks)

FA Criminal Record Checks (CRC also known as DBS) are now done routinely at clubs and are part and parcel of the children/U18s game with Welfare Officers having lead responsibility at a club for the application process.
Some volunteers at a club may think that once they receive their Criminal Records Check (CRC) Certificate through the post from the Disclosure and Barring Service that they are ‘cleared’ and can get involved in working with the children – however as, we know, this is not the case.
A CRC is only cleared by the FA when the FANumber of the person concerned shows the word ‘accepted’ and the new date of issue of the Certificate.
If you have any questions about Online CRCs just give the office a call and we will advise 0191 3872929.
Durham County FA Welfare Officer Bulletin Criminal Records Checks - CRCs (also known as DBS Checks)
Best Practice example – and please send me some of your best practice so I can highlight it to our Welfare Officer colleagues
Best practice with CRCs is to start the renewal process 3 months before the current CRC lapses (after 3 years) and I am aware that you do have to chase some people to get their renewals completed in a timely way. The attached letter is an example from one club about the issue of a coach not responding to club attempts to get the CRC renewed.
If you consider that the content of the letter is something your club may wish to adopt, you have the permission of the club concerned to do so.
Sometimes only by a club standing a volunteer down from any involvement until the CRC process is completed and the FAN updated, gets the volunteer to understand the importance of having CRC clearance every 3 years.
With new volunteers, always wait until the necessary CRC details show on their FAN before allowing them to get directly involved in helping out with the children/players at your club.


Social Media

Social media continues to be either a great asset or a nightmare depending on circumstances…………………..
All I would suggest is that you ask all volunteers not to get involved in any social media exchanges with anyone, for example, a parent raising an issue on their personal social media even if the comment is aimed at the coach or club
Simply ask the coach (or other club volunteer) to report the issue to you so you can take the matter to the club committee, should that be necessary.
Seek to ensure club officials, managers and coaches plus assistants use the club social media channel(s) e.g. Club Facebook Account, to communicate with updates about team matters and NOIT their personal social media. Any communications to U18s should also copy in parents/carers – not only to safeguard the child concerned but also the coach or club official who is sending a message.
Comprehensive Social Media guidance produced by the FA, which you might find helpful, can be obtained from and scroll down to Useful Downloads and click on ‘More Files’ tab.


Racist Incidents – Youth Football

Durham County FA have received a number of reports of the use of racist language between players in recent months and we are noting an upward trend in such reports.
Whether this is due to a rise in the number of incidents or a rise in the actual reporting of incidents is not yet clear.
Your club may or may not have had to deal with potential racist incidents in the past either between players, or players and referee, or coaches and players etc.
Given the above I wondered whether your club or a team within it had the issue of racism discussed with players, for example as a means of trying to prevent any occurrences?
If so, we would appreciate it if you would let us know what you did, how long it took and you view about its effect?
Please email with any information.
Thank You.


Supporting players with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Durham County FA receive various communications about children being diagnosed with ADHD; how this affects them and how best to work with those children in a football setting Useful information is available from the NHS The ‘Living With’ section provides information about how to address behaviour and relate to the child which I hope you will find helpful – it can also be of help when engaging with parents who have a child with ADHD You can also consider cascading this information across the club. Additional Support and Training Durham County FA have also organised workshops which are being delivered by SMILE Through Sport CIC and will focus on the following areas;
•Disability Awareness for Coaches
•Disability Awareness for Club Officials
•Autism Awareness for Coaches If any of your club members are interested in booking a place on any of the above courses please click this link;



Using FA Whole Game System –WGS Remember that if you have any issues with accessing and/or using these FA systems please just contact this office for advice and support - 0191 3872929 (Option 3) Durham County FA ‘Hive’ DCFA are in the process of developing a ‘hive’. This is an online information access point that will allow Welfare Officers to quickly access relevant reports, guidance, documents relating to safeguarding; for example, Criminal Records Checks, Social Media guidance etc. The Hive will also, amongst other things, allow for Welfare Officer’s to share examples of their good practice so we can build a ‘best practice’ library. Further details will be provided in coming months including how to register for Hive access. What do you want to find more information about? If there are any particular safeguarding issues or club related issues in your mind that you would like to find more information about, let me know and I’ll either reply direct or pass on to a colleague here at DCFA to respond to you. Such shared information may also be linked into the Hive.


Christmas Competition Winner!

Respect Christmas Competition Winner
Congratulations to Anne Grendale of Bowburn Youth FC for winning the prize of a bag of six footballs.
Anne’s name was first out of the hat from all winning entries – well done Anne; and thanks goes to everyone else who submitted entries – next time you may be a winner!


Page added 22nd July 2019