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Safeguarding and confidentiality within youth volunteering: considerations for health and social care professionals

This guidance has been written for health and social care professionals who are considering involving young volunteers in their work or within their organisation.

The Young People's Health Partnership (YPHP) is a seven-strong consortium of organisations working with the Department of Health, Public Health England and NHS England as strategic partners to raise the profile of the health agenda across the voluntary youth sector.

We are advocates for young people’s rights and understand that confidentiality and safeguarding are integral to effective work with young people across health and social care.

Involving young people in supporting the health and care of others is proven to have positive benefits to patients, the community and young volunteers. It is part of delivering the vision for health and care, The Five Year Forward View, and supports the national #iwill campaign.

However, volunteering has recently come under media scrutiny, particularly in light of the Lampard Report and, as such, safeguarding and confidentiality are and should be at the forefront of everyone’s minds.

YPHP have worked with young people and professionals to develop this guidance in order to enhance the confidence of professionals to engage young people in health and social care volunteering opportunities, ensuring that professionals feel confident balancing their duty of care towards young volunteers, whilst also upholding young people’s rights. It is designed to complement the Volunteering Matters Youth Social Action Toolkit.