Welfare & Safeguarding: Website & Online Safety and Messaging Apps
NDYC are committed to keeping children and young people safe from harm, and this includes in the on-line environment. The policy on this page provides guidance on how our organisation uses the internet and social media, and the procedures for doing so. It also outlines how we expect the staff who work for us, and the children who are members of our organisation, to behave online.
As an organisation, we commit to implementing this policy and addressing any concerns quickly and within these guidelines.
NDYC understands the importance of online communication for children's and young people's development. However, we recognise that relevant safeguards need to be put in place to ensure children and young people remain safe while online or using social media.
Instant messaging apps
Online messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp pose an increased risk to young people due to their private nature. Like text messages, content, images and videos can be shared privately, or in groups set up by users. These private messages could be used to bully or intimidate young people, expose them to inappropriate content or groom them for abuse.
NDYC policy is not to communicate directly with children under the age of 16 using messaging apps. Where messages are needed to inform participants about the day etc communication will only be with the parent or guardian. Messages should never be sent privately by a staff member to a young person.
It's important that clear boundaries are set for adults on how they can use these apps to communicate with young members, and also how to respond to reports of bullying from other children. This guidance is written into our online safety and social media policy and our acceptable use statement for children.
Further information for parents about keeping children safe online
The NSPCCs guidance for parents on online safety
Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP)
Child Exploitation and Online Protection Demands website
The UK Safer Internet Centre
Safer Internet Centres advice for parents and children
Contacts for parents, children and staff in relation to this policy and online safety
Website or Social Media and Welfare Lead
Richard Chidwick (Commodore NDYC)
Tel: 07484 325866
Last updated 2:50pm on 29 January 2024