The Archdiocese of Armagh has put in place a robust Safeguarding Strategy to ensure that all children, young people and vulnerable adults are kept safe within the Church. A key element of this strategy is the training and development of clergy and parishioners to ensure that all those working within the Church are aware of their responsibility when it comes to the protection of children, young people and vulnerable adults.
In 2010 the Archdiocese took part in a pilot scheme devised by the National Board to standardise its Safeguarding Training. This work was completed and the new training will be delivered on an all Ireland basis. The Archdiocese will deliver this new training to all church personnel, who have been vetted. Eleanor Kelly, the Archdiocese Training Co-ordinator has undertaken training with the National Board and is now one of their accredited Safeguarding Trainers.
Thirty three parishioners have been trained by the Archdiocese to deliver Safeguarding Information Sessions throughout the Archdiocese. This training adheres strictly to the National Board standardised programme and from October 2012 parish information sessions will take place in all 61 parishes. It is mandatory that all clergy, volunteers and those engaged in any ministry within the Church will attend these sessions. Refresher training will be obligatory every three years.
As well as the National Board training, specialised training will be offered based on needs assessments to all who are working within the Safeguarding area. The Archdiocese works closely with other agencies and personnel who can contribute to the effective development of the Safeguarding Strategy. Safeguarding personnel will continue to work closely with the National Board and other safeguarding networks. We have commissioned an independent evaluation of the training strategy which is being conducted by Mr. Frank Dolaghan, MENTOR Economic Developments, Newry. His evaluation report will inform our practice and delivery of training.
All parishes will be contacted to avail of the training and the Safeguarding Training Co-ordinator will work closely with all Parish Priests and Parish Safeguarding Representatives to ensure that this important element of our Safeguarding Strategy is effective.
Sincere thanks to all those Parish Priests and Parish Safeguarding Representatives who have already been in touch with us. Your support of this project and your commitment to the Safeguarding Strategy is greatly valued.
If you have any questions or comments you would like to make please contact Eleanor Kelly Archdiocese Safeguarding Co-ordinator (Training) at [email protected] or by contacting the Diocesan Safeguarding Office on 028/048 3752 5592.