Child Protection Policy          

Dar Ul Uloom Islamia Rizwia (Bralawai)

February 2022

Tabitha Cave DDI:  0117 314 5381 Reference: [tcc 105811.0001

 Key contacts:

Chair of trusteesAhsan Ul Haq Email: Telephone: 0121 773 7277
Nominated Safeguarding TrusteeAsif Quayum Email: Telephone: 0121 773 7277
Designated Safeguarding Leads Email:
Telephone:  0121 773 7277

Individual emails:

Key external contacts:

Local Safeguarding PartnersBirmingham City Council (social services) – the relevant team for child protection is the Children’s Advice & Support Service (CASS) who can be contacted in office hours on 0121 303 1888 or out of normal office hours, on 0121 675 4806.  Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group (healthcare) West Midlands Police (police)
Birmingham Safeguarding Children Partnership PO Box 17340 BIRMINGHAM B2 2DR Telephone number: 0121 464 2612

FGM reporting – non-emergency police contact number101
NSPCC FGM helpline 0800 028 3550
Forced Marriage Unit 0207 008 0151  email
Reporting serious wrongdoing to the Charity CommissionFor further guidance see:

Part One: Introduction

  1. Aims
    1. The charity accepts that it has a duty to make appropriate arrangements to safeguard and protect children from harm.  It acknowledges that it should safeguard children through the services it provides, both in arrangements it makes specifically for children and as part of its wider activities.
    2. The aim of this policy is to set out the arrangements the charity makes to safeguard and protect children from harm. This policy should be read in conjunction with the charity’s policy on safeguarding and protecting people and its code of conduct.  It provides additional information about the charity’s arrangements for the safeguarding and protection of children (i.e. those under 18).
    3. By this policy the charity intends to:
      1. raise community awareness about its own legal obligations to protect people from harm and in particular the measures it takes to safeguard and protect children; 
      2. support families and the community to understand their own obligations in relation to the protection of children; and 
      3. provide information to others about how to identify, respond to and report safeguarding concerns about children, where necessary and how to work with local safeguarding partners.
    4. The charity strives to create a safe environment where children develop values and skills which will allow them to be confident and active members of their faith groups and the wider community.
  2. Scope and application 
    1. Mosques provide an important service for children, parents and the Muslim community as a whole; and play an important role in keeping children safe in the local community. They do this by creating a safe environment for children and by taking proper action whenever they are concerned about a child.
    2. Traditionally, children over the age of 5 attend a mosque daily after normal school hours where they are taught to read the Qur’an in Arabic. Besides religious education, mosque “schools”, Hafiz lessons and/or education centres also play a role in preserving cultural heritage and teaching morals, which encourage children to adopt good behaviour in line with the Islamic faith and society as a whole.  
    3. This policy applies both to the provision of this education and to the whole of the charity’s operation, including activities at the mosque or other premises owned by the charity and those arranged by it elsewhere. It covers the involvement of trustees, staff, volunteers, children and the wider congregation in charity activities. It applies to those activities arranged specifically for children and otherwise.
    4. The policy is designed to address the charity’s child protection duty to:
      1. provide a safe and trusted environment which safeguards anyone who comes into contact with it, including children and other beneficiaries, staff and volunteers;
      2. set an organisational culture that prioritises safeguarding, so that people affected can report incidents and concerns with the assurance they will be handled sensitively and properly;
      3. have adequate safeguarding policies, procedures and measures to protect people generally and in particular those under the age of 18;
      4. provide clarity as to how concerns, incidents and allegations involving children will be handled should they arise, including reporting to the relevant authorities, such as the police, local authority and Charity Commission; and
      5. fulfil the obligations the charity has to safeguard and promote the welfare of children under the Charities Acts and Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018). 
  3. What is safeguarding in this context?
    1. Safeguarding: as defined in Working Together to Safeguard Children (September 2018) (WT) is:
      1. The protection of children from maltreatment;
      2. preventing impairment of children’s health and development;
      3. ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care; and
      4. taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes.
    2. Children includes:  everyone under the age of 18.
    3. Any child can be hurt, put at risk of harm or abused, regardless of their age, gender, religion or ethnicity. They can be harmed in any setting. Most commonly this is by a parent or carer, or someone who is known to them.  Children can also be harmed by others who come into contact with them, including those who may be in a position of trust. Children can also be abused by their peers, i.e. by other children and young people.
    4. The Children Acts of 1989 and 2004 set out the ways in which organisations and individuals should collaborate with others to protect children from harm. 
    5. Harm is defined in this context as:
      1. ill-treatment; or 
      2. the impairment of physical or mental health; and 
      3. the impairment of physical intellectual, emotional, social or behavioural development. 
    6. The Acts also describe the impact of sexual, physical, emotional abuse or neglect which is covered in more detail in Appendix One.   
    7. Local authorities have a legal duty to make enquiries where they have reasonable grounds to suspect that a child who lives or just happens to be in their area is suffering or likely to suffer significant harm.  The charity has a duty to report concerns about children to the local authority to enable them to perform this function.
    8. The charity will ensure that:
      1. There is a senior board level lead and designated practitioner with the required knowledge, skills and expertise to take leadership and operational responsibility for the charity’s child protection arrangements;
      2. It fosters a culture of listening to children and taking account of their wishes and feelings, both in individual decisions and the development of services;
      3. It has a culture that enables issues about safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children to be addressed;
      4. It has clear escalation policies for staff to follow when this policy is not being addressed by their organisation or other agencies;
      5. It makes arrangements which set out clearly the processes for sharing information with other practitioners and safeguarding partners;
      6. It has safe recruitment practices and ongoing safe working practices for individuals whom the charity permits to work regularly with children;
      7. It arranges appropriate supervision and support for staff, including the provision of appropriate safeguarding training;
      8. It creates a culture of safety, equality and protection while taking considerations of ethnicity and the Muslim faith into account.
    9. Further information about the charity’s arrangements for these are set out below.

Part  Two: The charity’s child protection arrangements

  1. Child Protection Lead
    1. In order to assist the charity to meet its responsibilities for safeguarding and child protection, the trustees have  appointed a Nominated Safeguarding Trustee (NSL) to lead the charity’s child protection arrangements and a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) to be responsible for the charity’s operational management of safeguarding.
    2. They will receive regular safeguarding and child protection training, including that offered by the Birmingham Safeguarding Children Partnership.
    3. The primary responsibilities and duties of the NST and DSL are to ensure:
      1. that the charity has a current Child Protection Policy and procedures in place and that these are regularly reviewed in line with any new national guidance or that issued from the Birmingham Children Safeguarding Partnership;
      2. that trustees, staff and regular volunteers, are familiar with the Child Protection Policy and procedures and that parents, children and young people attending the mosque are made aware of these documents;
      3. that all new staff receive an induction that includes information about safeguarding and child protection;
      4. that they contact Children and Family Services on behalf of the charity for advice, guidance or to make a referral if there are concerns about individual children or adults who may pose a risk to children;
      5. that they provide guidance to the trustees and staff about keeping the mosque a safe place for children and alert them to any issues of concern. This may include the need to develop other related policies;
      6. that they ensure that all trustees, staff, teachers and regular volunteers receive appropriate training in child protection;
      7. that they support members of staff and others (including parents) if requested, on actions to be taken if there are concerns about the welfare of individual children;
      8. that they oversee the necessary checks of current or new trustees, staff members and volunteers;
      9. that they act as the ‘link’ between the charity and statutory agencies (police and Local Safeguarding Partners) in relation to child protection matters;
      10. that they alert the trustees to any arrangements within the charity that require attention in order to keep children safe;
      11. that they ensure that all children and young people attending the mosque are aware of how to seek help if they are worried about themselves or other children.
  2. Listening to stakeholders
    1. Talking with and listening to children:
      1. The views of children and young people attending the mosque and charity activities should be sought and heard. They will be informed of the policies and procedures in place to keep them safe, how they can access help for themselves (both within the charity and outside it) and what to do if they are worried about others. Children will also be made aware of the expectations on them in respect of their own behaviours. 
    2. Engaging with parents: listening to their views and talking about safeguarding:
      1. It is important to listen to parents and encourage their involvement helping their children to learn in a safe environment.
      2. Parents, guardians and carers need to be made aware of the charity’s commitment to safeguarding children and the arrangements it makes to do so. Information, training and support will be provided about this policy and the need to share personal information and work with other agencies if there are concerns about a child.
      3. In some circumstances, it may be necessary and in the best interest of a child to seek advice or refer concerns directly to local safeguarding partners , rather than speaking to the parents or carers of a child (for example, when there are concerns that a parent or carer may have harmed a  child).
  3. Whistleblowing and escalation procedures
    1. The charity recognises the importance of people feeling able to raise concerns, confident that appropriate action will be taken.
    2. It encourages anyone with concerns about the welfare of others to raise them in accordance with this policy or the linked safeguarding policy.
    3. In the event that anyone feels unable to do so, or are concerned that their concerns have not been taken seriously, then they should raise their concerns direct with relevant agencies tasked with the protection of children.
  4. Confidentiality and information sharing
    1. Children and young people can only be protected if action is taken after concerns are recognised.   This means sharing information with those agencies who are able to make enquiries and investigate the concerns. In most circumstances this would be local safeguarding partners. 
    2. Confidentiality exists to protect individuals but is not intended to prevent the exchange of information between different professionals and staff who have a responsibility for keeping children and young people safe.   
    3. In cases where there are child protection concerns, there is a positive duty to share all relevant information with those services who need to know.   This may include revealing information (with or without the permission of the child  or the parents/carers) with other professionals who need the information to ensure that children are kept safe.  
    4. All records concerning safeguarding will be securely stored and access limited only to those who need to know.
    5. It is important that all staff are sensitive when children tell them about their personal lives and are able to explain to the child the reasons why some information must be shared. Staff should reassure the child and explain that the situation will not become common knowledge within the Mosque school and the wider Muslim community.
  5. Safe recruitment: recruitment of trustees, staff and volunteers
    1. The charity undertakes appropriate checks on trustees, staff and volunteers, depending on their proposed role.
    2. Where positions are advertised, the advertisement will make clear the charity’s commitment to safeguarding.  This will be reinforced at interview, induction and regularly once appointed.
    3. The following points should be considered when employing or engaging new people, whether in a paid or voluntary, permanent or temporary role:
      1. Clear job/role descriptions for every position and careful advance consideration as to whether the role will involve regular unsupervised access to children;
      2. Ask candidates to:
        1. confirm their identity and address by providing original official documents, such as a birth certificate, driving licence and/or passport;
        2. verify the authenticity of academic and professional qualifications;
        3. provide a full employment history;
        4. provide references from their current (or most recent employer) and from past jobs that have involved working with children;
      3. Interview candidates for the role and ask them to support the charity’s policy on safeguarding and child protection;
      4. make appointments only after references have been obtained and checked;
      5. all applicants should be asked to declare any criminal convictions or cautions;
      6. an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check will be needed whenever a candidate will have regular unsupervised access to children.
    4. Further advice on vetting and barring can be obtained from the following websites: and
  6. Training
    1. All trustees, staff, and those volunteers who come into contact with children, should receive training in safeguarding and child protection when first appointed and then receive suitable refresher training regularly to keep their knowledge and skills up to date. 
    2. In addition the charity will provide appropriate supervision, support and training to other volunteers.
  7. Creating a culture of safety, equality and protection
    1. The charity understands the need to ensure that all those who attend and work within the mosque understand what is expected of them. It is the responsibility of the whole community to act in accordance with the charity’s code of conduct and act as good role models at all times.
    2. It is a criminal offence to use physical punishment to correct a child’s behaviour in the UK. It is important to manage misconduct effectively and to teach children to live alongside others and understand individual rights and responsibilities. Staff are however able to use reasonable force to control or restrain a child in certain circumstances, including when dealing with disruptive behaviour. 

Part Three: What to do if you have concerns about a child

  1. How do I know that a child may be at risk of harm? 
    1. Indicators of harm:
      1. There are a wide variety of reasons why you may be concerned about the welfare of a child. These may (or may not) include:
        1. a child or young person telling you about someone’s behaviour towards them;
        2. another child telling you that they are worried about someone else;
        3. the behaviours or appearance of a child;
        4. the behaviours or appearance of the parents or carers or someone in close contact with the child;
        5. someone else shares their worries about a child with you.
    2. Further details about types and signs of abuse and particular safeguarding risks are set out in Appendix One.
  2. What should you do?
    1. If you have concerns about the welfare of a child, it is important that you seek appropriate advice and help.
      1. If you feel urgent action is needed because a child or young person is at immediate risk of harm, contact the Police immediately on 999.
      2. Otherwise you should discuss any concerns with the NST or DSL , the Chair of Trustees, or, in their absence, with the Children’s Advice and Support Service (CASS).
    2. When discussing matters with a child:
      1. Take anything you hear seriously and listen to the child. If a child is telling you about something that is worrying or upsetting them, let the child tell their story in their own way.  Only ask questions to help you understand what the child is saying, e.g. questions such as “when?”, “where?”, “who?” and avoid leading questions.
      2. Do not promise to keep a secret, and where appropriate explain that some things need to be shared with people whose jobs are to help children.
      3. Explain the actions that you may need to take so they know what to expect next.
      4. Write down what you have been told – use the child’s own language and record what you have said to them as well.
      5. Do not confront the alleged abuser.
  3. Making a referral
    1. If the DSL or the NST/Chair have concerns about a child’s welfare they should make a referral to children’s social care through CASS (using the details at the front of this policy). They should do so immediately if there is a concern that the child is suffering significant harm or is likely to do so.
  1. If they are not available you should contact children’s social care yourself to discuss your concerns –the safety of the child may depend on a quick response.  You should also let the DSL know that you have done so.
  2. When making a referral, you should include any relevant contextual details about the child.
  3. Keep a record of the call and who you have spoken to from the Children Services.
  4. Once contact has been made, the referrer will be asked to complete and submit a form which can be found on their website or using this link: They should follow up on their concerns if they are not satisfied with the response and can provide feedback or complain about the process. The details of how to do so can be found on their website or using this link:
  5. What will Children’s Services do?
    1. All contact with CASS will be considered alongside the statutory framework, the guidance set out in WT and the Local Safeguarding Children’s Partners’ threshold guidance:
    2. Children’s services will make initial enquiries. However, if the child is in immediate danger, a senior social worker or team manager will assess the seriousness of the concern and a decision on the course of action will be made within one working  day.
    3. Children’s services’ response to a referral may be that:
      1. the child requires immediate protection and urgent action is required;
      2. referral to other services;
      3. the provision of services, information and advice;
      4. no further action.

Part Four: Allegations made against a member of staff

  1. Staff do not normally expect allegations of abuse to be made against fellow staff members such as the imam, teachers, volunteers, etc. However, it is important that they acknowledge that such a possibility exists. It is important that all staff in contact with children and young people act in ways in which their behaviour cannot be misunderstood or lead any reasonable person to question their suitability to work with children and young people.
  2. Safeguarding concerns may arise in all areas of work .There are specific procedures for dealing with allegations of abuse against adults in positions of trust or responsibility, such as teachers, social workers, and people in voluntary organisations. These procedures also apply to imams and other teaching staff within Mosques. 
  3. Any allegation of children being abused by a staff member should be taken seriously and referred to Children and Family Services. Mosque Committees, as governing bodies, have a role in exercising their disciplinary functions in respect of child protection allegations against a member of staff, but they should not investigate individual cases. This will be carried out by Children and Family Services (and/or the Police) once they have been notified of concerns through a referral.

Part Five: Useful information

  1. Sources of information and internet resources
    1. Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018.
    2. Birmingham Safeguarding Children Partnership:
    3. Female Genital Mutilation:
    4. Forced Marriage:
    5. County line and drugs:   
    6. Guidance on gangs:  
    7. Charity Commission Safeguarding:
    8. CASS referral process:

Appendix 1 : Additional child protection information

  1. Types of abuse 
    1. Abuse: is a form of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting by those known to them or, more rarely, by others. Abuse can take place wholly online, or technology may be used to facilitate offline abuse. Children may be abused by an adult or adults or by another child or children .
    2. Physical abuse: is a form of abuse which may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child .
    3. Emotional abuse: is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to a child that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may include not giving the child opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond a child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child from participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyberbullying), causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, although it may occur alone .
    4. Neglect: is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy, for example, as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to: provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment); protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger; ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers); or ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs .
  2. Signs of abuse 
    1. Possible signs of abuse include, but are not limited to:
      1. A child says he / she has been abused or asks a question or makes a comment which gives rise to that inference;
      2. there is no reasonable or consistent explanation for a child’s injury, the injury is unusual in kind or location or there have been a number of injuries and there is a pattern to the injuries;
      3. the child’s behaviour stands out from the group as either being extreme model behaviour or extremely challenging behaviour, or there is a sudden or significant change in their child’s behaviour;
      4. the child asks to drop classes or activities with a particular adult and seems reluctant to discuss the reasons;
      5. a child’s development is delayed, the child may lose or gain weight or there is deterioration in the child general well-being;
      6. the child appears neglected, e.g. dirty, hungry, inadequately clothed;
      7. the child is reluctant to go home, or has been openly rejected by his / her parents or carers; and
      8. inappropriate behaviour displayed by other members of staff or any other person working with children, for example inappropriate sexual comments; excessive one-to-one attention beyond the requirements of their usual role or responsibilities; or inappropriate sharing of images.
    2. The Birmingham Safeguarding Children Partnership provides further advice on the signs of abuse.  The NSPCC website is also a good source of information and advice.
  3. Identifying children at risk 
    1. Knowing what to look for is vital to the early identification of abuse and neglect. 
    2. It is rare for child abusers to be a stranger to the child. Children can be harmed by parents, other family members, carers, neighbours, professionals working with children, or any other adult known to the child or family. A child may also be the victim of abuse where the abuser is another child.
    3. There is no ‘typical’ situation or environment in which child abuse could happen. However, some children are at a much greater risk.  Higher risk situations include those where a child:
      1. is disabled and/or  has specific additional needs;
      2. has special educational needs (whether or not they have a statutory Education, Health and Care Plan);
      3. is a young carer;
      4. is showing signs of being drawn into anti-social or criminal behaviour, including gang involvement and association with organised crime groups;
      5. is frequently missing/goes missing from care or from home;
      6. is at risk of modern slavery, trafficking or exploitation;
      7. is at risk of being radicalised or exploited;
      8. is in a family circumstance presenting challenges for the child, such as drug and alcohol misuse, adult mental health issues and domestic abuse;
      9. is misusing drugs or alcohol themselves;
      10. has returned home to their family from care;
      11. is a privately fostered child.
    4. All trustees, staff and volunteers who work with children should be aware of indicators of abuse and neglect so that they are able to identify children who may be in need of help or protection. 
    5. Providing “early help” is more effective in promoting the welfare of children than reacting when problems become more serious.  Early help means providing support as soon as a problem emerges at any point in a child’s life.
    6. Threats to the welfare of children can arise in many different scenarios. A child who is vulnerable to abuse or exploitation is likely to be vulnerable in a number of different settings. Assessments of children should consider whether wider environmental factors are present in a child’s life that could be a threat to their safety and/or welfare  and this information should be shared with Local Safeguarding Partners to ensure a joined-up, holistic approach to protecting children. 
  4. Specific safeguarding risks
    1. County lines and drugs
      1. Criminal exploitation is also known as ‘county lines’ and occurs when gangs and organised crime networks groom and exploit children to sell drugs. Often children involved in county lines are made to travel across counties, and they use dedicated mobile phone ‘lines’ to supply drugs. 
      2. Signs that children may be at risk of county lines may include, but not limited to:
        1. returning home late, staying out all night or going missing;
        2. being found in areas away from home;
        3. increasing drug use, or being found to have large amounts of drugs on them;
        4. being secretive about who they are talking to and where they are going;
        5. unexplained absences;
        6. unexplained money, phone(s), clothes or jewellery;
        7. increasingly disruptive or aggressive behaviour;
        8. using sexual, drug-related or violent language you wouldn’t expect them to know;
        9. repeated injuries or looking particularly dishevelled;
        10. having hotel cards or keys to unknown places.
    2. Gangs
      1. A core part of gang identity is crime and violence.  Defining a gang can be set out in three tiers: 
      2. Criminal gangs: is also known as Organised Criminal Groups (OCG). Many of these groups are often loose networks of criminals that come together for a specific criminal activity, acting in different roles depending on their skills and expertise. Their involvement in crime is for personal gain (financial or otherwise). For most, however, crime is their ‘occupation’. 
      3. Street gangs: are predominantly street-based groups of young people who see themselves (and are seen by others) as a discernible group for whom crime and violence is integral to the group’s identity.  A street gang will engage in criminal activity and violence and may lay claim over territory (not necessarily  geographical but it can include an illegal economy territory) where they are in conflict with other similar gangs. These gangs have some form of identifying structure featuring a hierarchy usually based on age, physical strength, propensity to violence or older sibling rank. 
      4. Peer Group: is a relatively small, unorganised and transient group composed of peers who share the same space and a common history. School children will usually be part of a peer group making that transition into street gangs, as well as those involved in gangs. It is common for groups of children and young people to gather together in public places to socialise. Crime and violence is not intrinsic to the identity or practice of peer groups. Although some peer group gatherings can lead to increased anti-social behaviour and youth offending, these activities should not be confused with the serious violence or criminal activity (such as drug dealing) of a street gang, or criminal activities of an organised crime group.
      5. Street gangs and OCGs are socially and intentionally constructed group of individuals with attitudes, thinking and behaviours geared towards criminality. 
      6. Safeguarding procedures can provide a key tool for all agencies working with young people to assist them when working together to prevent young people from being drawn into gangs. 
      7. Signs that children may be at risk of being involved in a gang may include, but not limited to:
        1. child withdrawn from family;
        2. sudden loss of interest in the mosque;
        3. started to use new or unknown slang words;
        4. holds unexplained money or possessions;
        5. stays out unusually late without reason;
        6. sudden change in appearance – dressing in a particular style or ‘uniform’ similar to that of other young people they hang around with, including a particular colour
        7. new nickname;
        8. unexplained physical injuries;
        9. graffiti style ‘tags’ on possessions, school books, walls;
        10. constantly talking about another young person who seems to have a lot of influence over them;
        11. broken off with old friends and hangs around with one group of people;
        12. started adopting certain codes of group behaviour e.g. ways of talking and hand signs;
        13. expressing aggressive or intimidating views towards other groups of young people, some of whom may have been friends in the past;
        14. scared when entering certain areas; and concerned by the presence of unknown youths in their neighbourhoods.
  1. Forced marriage
    1. Forcing a person into marriage is a crime in England and Wales and is a form of honour-based violence.  It is important to understand that an arranged marriage is not the same as a forced marriage. 
    2. In an arranged marriage, the families take a leading role in choosing the marriage partner, but the choice of whether to enter the marriage is left to the potential bride and groom.
    3. A forced marriage is one entered into without the full and free consent of one or both parties and where violence, threats or any other form or coercion is used to cause a person to enter into a marriage.  Threats can be physical or emotional and psychological.  A lack of full and free consent can be where a person does not consent or where they cannot consent (if they have learning disabilities, for example).  Nevertheless, some communities use religion and culture as a way to coerce a person into marriage.
    4. Guidance on the warning signs that forced marriage may be about to take place, or may have already taken place, can be found on pages 13-14 of the Multi-agency guidelines: handling case of forced marriage (HM Government, June 2014). 
    5. For further advice and information you can contact the Forced Marriage Unit 0207 008 0151 or email
  2. Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
    1. FGM is a form of Honour-Based Violence.  It comprises procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs.  It is illegal in the UK and a recognised form of child abuse with long lasting harmful consequences.
    2. Indicators that FGM may have occurred include and not limited to:
      1. prolonged absence from the mosque;
      2. noticeable behaviour change on return and long periods away from classes or other normal activities, possibly with bladder or menstrual problems;
      3. having difficulty walking, standing or sitting;
      4. spending longer in the bathroom or toilet;
      5. appearing quiet, anxious or depressed;
      6. reluctance to go to the doctors or having a routine medical examinations;
      7. asking for help – although they may not be explicit about the problem because they are scared or embarrassed.
    3. If you’re worried a child is at risk of or has already had FGM, you can call the free NSPCC FGM helpline on 0800 028 3550 or email
    4. Staff must be aware of the requirement to make a report to the police if they suspect that FGM appears to have been carried out on a girl under 18.  The report should be made orally by calling 101, the single non-emergency number.  
  1. Dealing with children who misbehave
    1. It is a criminal offence to use physical punishment to correct a child’s behaviour in the UK, although the use of reasonable force may be justified in certain circumstances. 
    2. The charity expects its community to uphold the UK law,  to manage misconduct effectively, to teach children to live alongside others and to understand individual rights and responsibilities and all adults in the community to lead by example. 
    3. Some of the ways to deal with misbehaviour may include, but are not limited to:
      1. using positive instructions, for example, “Walk safely,” rather than, “Don’t run!” It is much  easier for a child to accept being told “to do” something rather than being told “not to do” something;
      2. using ‘proximal praise’. Praising the child who is sitting nicely beside a child who is misbehaving can encourage the target child to sit appropriately;
      3. explaining the rewards in use, for example, praise, doing a favourite activity, giving away stickers or other forms of “treats”, as well as implementing sanctions for bad behaviour.
      4. Calmly repeating an instruction if necessary, or having a quiet word with the child, encouraging them to make the right choice. This discreet method is often far more effective than raising the voice and encouraging conflict.
      5. Helping the child to make the right choice by explaining why an instruction is  necessary.
      6. Ensuring that sanctions are fair and consistent.
      7. Criticising behaviour, not the child. Reminding a child that it is their behaviour that is wrong, for example their actions are ‘silly’, not the child. Reminding them again about choice. Criticising or shouting at the child in a personal manner is not appropriate.
      8. Developing a child’s self-esteem through creating a calm, positive environment  and recognising and acknowledging appropriate  behaviour.
      9. Creating a climate of trust where children are confident that their concerns will be  heard.
  1. Peer on peer abuse
    1. Some behaviour by a child towards another may be of such a nature that safeguarding concerns are raised.  Safeguarding issues can manifest themselves via peer on peer abuse.  This includes, but is not limited to:
      1. bullying (including cyber-bullying and prejudiced-based bullying);
      2. physical abuse such as hitting, kicking, shaking, biting, hair pulling, or otherwise causing physical harm;
      3. harmful sexual behaviour;
      4. sexting (also known as youth produced sexual imagery); and
      5. initiation / hazing type violence and rituals.
    2. The charity takes steps to minimise the risk of all types of peer-on-peer abuse.  Appropriate action is taken to protect children identified as being at risk of such abuse, including the particular vulnerabilities of those with a special educational need or disability.
    3. Abusive behaviour by children must be taken seriously.  Behaviour should not be dismissed as being normal between young people, as “banter” or simply “part of growing up”.  Behaviour such as initiation violence or any form of sexual violence or sexual harassment is not acceptable.