Safeguarding in the Methodist Church

Safeguarding is defined as protecting the health and wellbeing of children, young people and vulnerable adults. It is about implementing the necessary measures to prevent harm to children, young people and vulnerable adults who are most at risk of abuse and harm. It is integral to the mission of the Methodist Church to value every human being as part of God’s creation.

At the heart of the Methodist community is a deep sense of the place of welcome, hospitality and openness, which demonstrates the nature of God’s grace and love for all. Our church communities are called to be places where the transformational love of God is embodied and life in all its fullness is a gift, which is offered to all people.

Everyone has the right to protection from abuse and to be treated no less favourably than others, irrespective of any personal or protected characteristic. There are no distinctions regardless of age, gender, race, disability, sexual orientation, religion/ beliefs, pregnancy/maternity, marriage/civil partnership and gender reassignment. Safeguarding is about the action the Church takes to promote a safer culture. This means we will:

  • promote the welfare of children, young people and adults
  • work to prevent abuse from occurring
  • seek to protect and respond well to those that have been abused.

We will take care to identify where a person may pose a risk to others, and offer support to them whilst taking steps to reduce such risks. The Methodist Church affirms that safeguarding is a shared responsibility. Everyone associated with the Church who comes into contact with children, young people and adults who may be vulnerable has a role to play, supported by consistent policies promoting good practice across the whole Church. The Church will undertake all appropriate steps to maintain a safer environment. It will practise fully and positively Christ’s ministry towards children, young people and adults who are vulnerable and respond sensitively and compassionately to help keep them safe from harm.

Online Guidance

The Methodist Church has issued guidance relating to staying safe online - both as individuals and as a church volunteer.  See the below documents which can also be viewed via httips://  

Being Transparent and Safe Online
Stay Safe Online for Adults
Children and Youth Social Media Guidance 
Connexional Digital Communication Guidance
A Guide to 'all things digital' from the Yorkshire North & East District
Social Media Guidelines

You can also review the below websites for advice and support:

Review the Retention Schedule with regards to record keeping of all kinds within the Methodist Church:

District Safeguarding Group 

District Safeguarding Officer:  Grahame Snelling (Temporary)
District Chair: Rev Dr David Hinchliffe
Independent Chair: Mrs Sandra Oborski
Lay/Ordained Members: 
Mrs Sue Byard
Rev Ian Couchman
Rev Andrew Reed
LN Representative : Ms Tricia Mitchell

For general assistance regarding processing DBS applications, please contact DDC on
For ministerial DBS queries, contact Wendy Cory, District Administrator on

General Safeguarding Resources

Methodist Safeguarding Policies & Guidance
See Appendices for:
Model church & circuit safeguarding policies
Role descriptors for church & circuit safeguarding officers
External users’ safeguarding policy declaration


Safer Recruitment
Policy & procedure for recruiting volunteers and lay employees.

Past Cases Review: Courage, Cost & Hope
The outcome of which underpins current safeguarding policy and procedure.

Coming soon...God Welcomes All: How Faith Informs Safeguarding 
A study guide for the Theology of Safeguarding.
Watch the introductory video here

Safeguarding Webinars
Including topics such as Financial Abuse, Domestic Abuse and Bullying.

Connexional safeguarding home page
In addition to the pages named above; includes Dementia Friendly Churches and Safeguarding Podcasts & Blogs.

Positive Working Together
Positive Working Together is the job of everybody in the Church and the resources found on these pages aim to help everybody play their part.

Learning Network Courses
Including Circuit Stewards’ and Unconscious Bias Training, and Lay Employment Support.

Property and Lettings


External Users Safeguarding Policy

Children and Youth

The Well Learning Hub


District Safeguarding Policy 

Download our Safeguarding Policy here.

Safeguarding Training

Foundation Module

If you require Foundation Module training please contact your Circuit Safeguarding Officer.

Advanced Module
Click here to view the Learning Network Eventbrite page for booking on to Safeguarding Training: Advanced Module courses and Train the Trainers (Foundation Module).  A webinar for Updates on Safeguarding for LEPs is also now available.   

Please ensure that all those newly appointed to posts this Connexional year are undertaking safeguarding training appropriate to their role, and those continuing in role are refreshing their training every four years.  The up to date lists of ‘Who needs to attend’ Foundation and Advanced Module Safeguarding Training can be found here .

If you have any queries relating to the Advanced Module or Train the Trainers training, please contact Jon White from the Learning Network on .

South-East District Safeguarding Newsletters 

Click here to download:

Issue No. 5 March 2020; The Essential Trustee; Wellbeing Resources 

Issue No. 4 August 2019

Issue No. 3 April 2019

Issue No. 2 - March 2018

Issue No. 1 - October 2017