Before beginning the process of developing your own systems and approach to Contextual Safeguarding it is important to first assess and reflect upon current practice and approaches to extra-familial risk. This should include consideration of what is working well and the strength of current strategic and operational approaches, which areas require development and any current gaps. Contextual Safeguarding is a framework, rather than a model, and as such it is important that efforts to develop contextual approaches understand and evaluate current responses to peer-on-peer abuse and extra-familial harm to support the development of contextually informed and holistic approaches to safeguarding.
Before starting to develop a Contextual Safeguarding system we advise partners to audit their current response to extra-familial harm using our Contextual Safeguarding Audit Toolkit. The audit can be undertaken from start to finish or as part of discreet audit activities. Our Audit Toolkit includes information on: audit governance, the audit itself, dissemination and application.
The audit process focuses on strategic review of strategies and policies, observation of practice including meeting observations and engagement with young people. All the documents needed to complete the audit including an audit checklist are available through the network and can be completed and updated by members.
You can access the Contextual Safeguarding Audit Toolkit here.