What you can expect and how to play your part in safeguarding your child.

Everyone involved in football has a part to play to ensure children can play in a safe and enjoyable environment. County FAs, club committees, designated safeguarding officers, coaches, medics, referees and parents/carers – all are key to ensuring football has effective safeguards in place.

Nottinghamshire FA is committed to:

  • Implementing preventative safeguarding measures (including DBS Checks and safeguarding training)
  • Making the reporting of concerns as easy as possible (via a network of club welfare officers)
  • Ensuring safeguarding concerns are investigated swiftly and thoroughly, working with statutory agencies (via Designated Safeguarding Officer Rachael Wilks and The FA’s Case Management Team)

Nottinghamshire FA parents poster


Every parent/carer is encouraged to complete the free FA Safeguarding Awareness course for Parents & Carers. The course can be completed online and only takes 30 minutes.

Safeguarding Awareness for parents & carers

All affiliated clubs must have a Safeguarding Children Policy, a Club Welfare Officer (CWO) who has been DBS-checked and safeguarding-trained. The Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer and CWO must have completed The FA's free ‘Safeguarding for Committee Members’ course. All coaches must be named against the team they are involved with on The FA’s system, must be DBS-checked and safeguarding-trained.  

Firstly, it’s important to know who’s helping your child play football, understanding what’s expected of your child and in turn how you and their coaches are expected to behave.  A well-run club will be happy to share how they organise things, so go ahead and ask, check out the club’s website and social media pages (if they have them) as these will also give you some insights to the club.

You might be offered parent/carer and or player ‘welcome packs’, player ‘taster sessions’ and pre-season parent/care meetings. All are helpful in getting to know exactly what’s on offer. We’d recommend you also check out our Guidance Notes 8.1: Questions You Should Ask in the ‘Useful resources’ at the foot of this page.

If you are worried about a child, it’s vital you report your concerns. There are five ways to do this:

  • To your club (usually referred to as the club welfare officer in grassroots football)
  • To your County FA Designated Safeguarding Officer Rachael Wilks.
  • By emailing The FA Safeguarding Team at
  • If urgent and you cannot contact your club, league or County FA Designated Safeguarding Officer, you should call the NSPCC 24 hour helpline on 0808 800 5000;
  • If it is an emergency because a child or children are at immediate risk, then call the Police 999 or Children’s Social Care in your area Nottingham 0300 500 8090.


If you’d like to find out more about what happens when you report a concern or to access The FA Referral Form and refer to our Guidance Notes 2.1: How to Report Safeguarding Concerns and Guidance Notes 2.2: Safeguarding Referral Form – Affiliated Football.

9 in 10 children play better with positive encouragement*’

Allowing the coach to coach, the children to play and learn, whilst openly applauding effort are what we’d encourage every parent to do. It’s about having fun in a safe and supportive environment.

(*FA Respect research 2017/18).


Get In Touch

Rachael Wilks

Designated Safeguarding Officer

By Phone: 07415 238880

By Email: