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National Safeguarding Week: Together we can keep people safe

This week, 16-22 November, is National Safeguarding Week, which aims to raise awareness about safeguarding issues.

We at Welsh Gymnastics are absolutely committed to safeguarding.

I am sure many of you will be aware of the movement by gymnasts to speak out about their negative experiences in gymnastics this summer and that has given everyone in the sport reason to reflect.

Gymnasts start at a young age and get used to following instruction from coaches, often for good reason, usually for their own safety – but also to progress in learning a new skill or technique.

What has become clear is that we must work to ensure that this practice of following instruction does not stop children from feeling they can ask questions and speak out. We must foster a culture where children feel they have a voice – and this voice is heard.

Welsh Gymnastics is absolutely committed to learning from the past and making our sport as safe as it can be.

Safeguarding covers a wide range of topics, including mental health and wellbeing, and this is only heightened by the impact of Covid-19. We have a collective responsibility to look out for the children and young people who take part in gymnastics, but also to look to the wider community who may also be affected by things such as poor mental health.

We have a week of activities lined up this week to highlight and engage with the community on how we can work together to keep people safe. By the end of the week we hope to have a greater understanding and awareness of the support available. 

Stay safe – and look out for each other.

Michelle Fulford

Chief Executive Officer, Welsh Gymnastics