Our Safeguarding Policy

The YMCA’s of Australia are committed to providing opportunities for all children and young people to grow in body mind and spirit and be protected from harm.

Feel Safe, Be Safe at the Y

The YMCA have established a National Safeguarding Unit (Y Safeguarding) to drive our collective approach to safeguarding Children and Young People and have developed our own Feel Safe, Be Safe Framework which aspires to ensure that all Children and Young People are safe and feel safe at the Y, in their Families and in their Communities. Our Feel Safe, Be Safe Framework aims to develop: A safe culture nationally which empowers Children and Young People by promoting Children and Young Person focused leadership and governance;

  • Safe environments at the YMCA and in Communities which empower Children and Young People to thrive; and
  • Safe operations to ensure YMCA People have the right policies, processes and practices to keep Children and Young People safe.
  • We have an unwavering focus and commitment to safeguarding children first and foremost in everything we do. We have official accreditation as a Child Safe Organisation and a strong Safeguarding Children and Young People Policy and Procedures. These frameworks are helping us to continually embed a child and young people safe culture into YMCA SA.

At the YMCA the safety, welfare and wellbeing of children, young people and vulnerable adults is our highest priority. The right to be able to enjoy a safe environment free from threats, abuse, neglect or exploitation is our service commitment.

We work hard to ensure the safeguarding of children and young people is embedded in our culture and at the forefront of everything we do. We know that it’s not just about having the right policies and procedures it’s also about being proactive.

Under the Safeguarding Children program, the YMCA participate in a voluntary accreditation scheme provided by the Australian Childhood Foundation (ACF).

Being accredited endorses the Y’s efforts to actively pursue the highest level of child safety in our organisation is highlighted by:

  • A National Framework and Strategy
  • Our rigorous and robust recruitment, screening and induction process detail that everyone working or engaged at the YMCA must have a valid and satisfactory National Criminal History Check and a Working With Children check.
  • Comprehensive and ongoing training and professional development
  • An environment which is child friendly but limits an opportunity for a child or young person to be harmed.

A crucial aspect of Safeguarding Children and Young People is ensuring our staff understand the process for reporting any concerns they have about a child or young person’s wellbeing and that our staff also understand the YMCA SA's expectations in relation to their code of conduct around children and young people. Our National Safeguarding Framework, reporting procedures and other relevant documents are available below.

Board Commitment to Safeguarding

At the YMCA we are committed to empowering all Children and Young People to feel safe and be safe at the Y, in their families, and in their communities. As such we embed safeguarding in all that we do to ensure Children and Young People remain front-of mind in all our programs and services. As a Board we are committed to creating:

  1. A safe culture that empowers Children & Young People and promotes intergenerational leadership and governance at the Y;
  2. Safe operations to ensure YMCA staff have the right policies, processes and practices to keep Children and Young People safe;
  3. Safe environments and spaces for Children and Young People at the Y.


Child friendly versions

Teen and youth friendly versions

Adult friendly versions

Child Abuse Report Line (CARL)

YMCA South Australia requires all staff, volunteers and directors to report concerns to the South Australia Child Abuse Report Line. If you are concerned about a child and have a reasonable suspicion that a child is being abused or neglected, phone the report line, on:

13 14 78

The report line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All serious concerns must be reported via the report line and not via the online reporting system provided on the CARL web page. Serious concerns include when you suspect a child is in imminent or immediate danger of:

  • serious harm
  • serious injury
  • chronic neglect
  • or when a child is in care of the Department for Child Protection and you suspect they are being abused or neglected.

The Government of South Australia through the Department for Child Protection has provided additional resources in relation to reporting child abuse, including the information details required for lodging a report as well as indicators of abuse or neglect.