The Safeguarding Training Fund – what you need to know

Just over a week ago the minister for Civil Society Mims Davies announced an investment of £1.2m by the government and the National Lottery Community Fund to help all charities with safeguarding support and help them improve their knowledge of safeguarding requirements.

NCVO was named as the organisation that will lead the delivery of phase 1 of the Safeguarding Training Fund.

We are doing this in partnership with 13 other organisations, which have come together as the ‘Safer Social Sector Partnership’ to share their expertise and experience, and to ensure that charities of all types and sizes become safer organisations for everyone.

We decided to take on this work because there can be no higher priority for the sector than safeguarding the well-being and upholding the dignity of everyone we come into contact with.

Who we are

NCVO is the lead member and accountable body for the Safer Social Sector Partnership.

We have formed a unique partnership, which brings together national umbrella organisations, and safeguarding experts:

We have expertise in safeguarding, reach into the sector and the best insight into user experience and digital content design. Every partner is committed to delivering high quality support and easy to use materials that will help organisations regardless of their experience so far in safeguarding.

This is also a ‘digital first’ project. So a key role will be played by our digital partner Neontribe in carrying out in-depth user research and testing – both of which are so important to ensure that what is developed meets an existing need and addresses gaps in provision.

And, last but certainly not least, we will engage leading charity law firm Bates Wells Braithwaite. The law and regulation on safeguarding has evolved over many decades, with overlapping duties stemming from common law, legislation, statutory guidance and a significant body of case law. Their advice will ensure that our resources clearly and accurately represent the current legal position.

Why we are doing this

What we will do

Our vision is for all those in contact with voluntary organisations to be safe from harm.

We are committed to putting the needs, experiences and voices of users within the voluntary and community sector at the heart of our project. This is a diverse range of users – from staff to volunteers, trustees to contractors, senior leaders to front-line practitioners. They work in a wide range of organisations – from multi-million charities to micro unincorporated groups – and across a diverse range of settings and contexts.

To achieve this we will develop organisations’ safeguarding knowledge, skills, practice and values. By providing access to appropriate, relevant and proportionate safeguarding resources. This will be made possible thanks to the design of a new ‘safeguarding gateway’ on the NCVO Knowhow website.

This will be followed by the updating and development of resources that meet identified needs or gaps in provision. The accessibility of these resources will be maximised through the use of a variety of dissemination channels, including podcasts and videos.

What next

The project is very tightly timed: phase 1 needs to end within the next six months, and will be followed by a second phase where funding will be awarded to share the resources developed and provide training to support grassroots charities and community organisations to improve their safeguarding practice.

The process and timings to apply for this funding will be announced by the National Lottery Community Fund, so do keep an eye on their website.



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Elizabeth was head of policy and public services at NCVO until 2020.

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