Raising awareness of the importance of Safeguarding in football
Hampshire FA is lending its full support to Play Safe – a national FA-led campaign to raise awareness of the importance of safeguarding in football.
Play Safe is being run in partnership with the NSPCC and has the full backing of the Premier League, EFL, Barclays FA Women’s Super League and the FA Women’s Championship. It’s also supported by every County FA and is being run across all grassroots leagues and clubs.
The main element of Play Safe is a series of short films which emphasise the importance of having safeguarding embedded in all we do. The films also explain to parents/carers and children themselves know what to do if they feel unsafe or worried, because nothing matters more than making sure football is safe for everyone, especially children and young people. You can see these films below.
Discussing the new Play Safe campaign, Hampshire FA's Designated Safeguarding Officer, Melanie Gill, said: "At Hampshire FA, Safeguarding is central to everything that we do – we all have a responsibility to ensure that football can be played in a fun and safe environment and we work to support our network of Club and League Welfare Officers, volunteers who promote and embed safeguards across the game. We would encourage players, parents, spectators, coaches and club officials to support and promote the Play Safe initiative launched this weekend. Together we can make the game safer for all participants, not just this weekend but every weekend. To find out more about our work in this area and to access support and guidance, please visit our website: https://www.hampshirefa.com/about/safeguarding-and-welfare"
FA Chief Executive Mark Bullingham notes: “As a youth team coach, I will be working with my club to ensure we support the Play Safe messaging. I am also pleased that the campaign has the support of the former footballers with lived experience of abuse in football, who are on our Survivor Support and Safeguarding Advisory Group. The Group has collectively said:
“Learning from the past is crucial, so that we can prevent the horrific experiences that happened to us and so many others in football, from happening again.
“As a group of survivors, we fully support the ethos and important messages that Play Safe conveys – whether to club officials, parents/carers and or vitally, children and young people themselves. Equally important is that Play Safe is not a one-off campaign – it will be used at key points in the football calendar to remind everyone in football, that children’s welfare and keeping them safe, should be at the heart of all that we do.”
As the Survivor Group points out, you’ll see Play Safe appearing at various points throughout the season to keep safeguarding front of mind in football. Together, we want to do everything we can so everyone – particularly children and young people – has a consistently positive experience of our great game.