In January I had the opportunity to participate in a course about safeguarding among some of the other volunteers, workers and students. It was a very enriching experience.
First of all, I think it’s important to explain what safeguarding is, in order to people understand why it is so important. For me safeguarding is all about protection, it means to protect those that are at your care from harm, abuse or neglect so that they have assured their human rights, well-being and health.
Saying that it is also very important to understand what harm and abuse is, in order to better prevent it. We have different categories of abuse, signs and indicators and patterns that we must look at when we have one of these situations. That basically means that we have to pay attention to our clients and possible change in their behavior to be able to realize what has happened to then, and if it something to be worried about.
When we talk about prevention it’s related to everything that we can do before the situation of abuse happens, for example, explaining kids that they shouldn’t walk alone at night in dangerous parts of a city. Another great example about prevention in safeguarding is doing courses like this one, because if everyone knows their role in the organization and know clearly at is or isn’t abuse, they can help preventing it.
In this safeguarding course we also learned about what to do when the situation has happened, because sometimes you just can’t prevent it, danger is everywhere. It is important that victims are taught to report the abuse and that the person who is hearing demonstrate concern and know how to deal with it, asking for help if needed. The person’s problem should be treated carefully, and a report must be made. After, the organization has to access what they can do to solve the problem and make the victim feel safer, to do that they can try to see if the needs of the victim are full field.
A situation of abuse can happen anywhere and with anyone. It can happen at home but also at school or work. So, it’s important that everyone is vigilant to the behavior of those around and that everyone work together in order to find a solution.
I think this was a very important course for us, volunteers, who are working particularly with vulnerable people like with children and adults with disabilities because that’s where a lot of abuse situation happens, since this people are less capable to defend themselves. This course was also important to our every day life because as I said before dangerous is everywhere and can even happened to us or to someone we know and is good to be prepared when a bad situation happens.