World Athletics has produced a Safeguarding Essentials training course for everyone involved in athletics. Available on the World Athletics e-learning platform in seven languages, it is a basic awareness course explaining why safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility.
The release of the Safeguarding Essentials training course follows the launch of the World Athletics Safeguarding Policy in 2021 and Safeguarding Rules approved by the World Athletics Council in August.
The policy, rules and training course are all designed to help create a safe and welcoming environment at all levels of the sport, where everyone involved is respected, valued and protected.
The 90-minute certificated course – available on the e-learning platform in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese (Mandarin), Arabic and Russian – explains what safeguarding is and why it is important, as well as how to respond to safeguarding concerns. It is for anyone involved in athletics, from elite level international athletes, Member Federation officials and volunteers to grassroots club members, administrators and coaches.
World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said: “Since we launched the World Athletics Safeguarding Policy in 2021, we have known that we needed to provide a training course to help everyone in our sport understand the fundamentals of safeguarding and increase the awareness of all our community.
“Policy doesn’t work unless people understand it, implement it and care about it. Knowing what safeguarding looks like in athletics is the only way we can effectively embed it within our sport.
“Safeguarding is more than just a line in our Integrity Code of Conduct. We need action, individually and collectively. We owe this to our athletes, competing now and into the future.”
At the end of the course, learners should be able to:
1. Describe what safeguarding in athletics means.
2. Recognise safeguarding risks in athletics and know how to reduce risks.
3. Understand how to report safeguarding concerns so relevant authorities can respond properly.
4. Start making plans for how to take next steps in safeguarding.
The course provides an engaging learning experience, through interactive bitesize lessons containing animated scenarios and quizzes. The content is available anytime, anywhere, and from any device, allowing users to learn at their own pace and convenience. It has been produced by the Open University, is based on the FIFA Guardians Safeguarding Essentials course and has been developed alongside a sports generic course produced by UNICEF.
UNICEF, World Athletics and a number of other international federations are working on two additional and more advanced safeguarding training modules, which will be available in the first half of 2024.
As announced in 2021, every Member Federation must have its own safeguarding policy and procedures in place by the end of 2023. To assist Member Federations who do not currently have any form of safeguarding policy, or who need to update their safeguarding policy, World Athletics has produced a Starter Pack. The Starter Pack describes and explains the benefits and importance of four documents – a safeguarding policy, code of conduct, reporting flowchart and safeguarding rules – all of which Member Federations should understand and work towards creating and adopting themselves. Relevant documents can be found on the World Athletics Safeguarding page and in the Member Federation Resource Centre of the World Athletics Library.News