#ItStartsWithYou #BeAChampionForChildren – campaign goes live!
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In this Q&A, Clare Barrell from UK Sport shares the details of the campaign in honour of Universal Children's Day.

The International Safeguarding Children in Sport Initiative was founded in 2012 when a group of organisations came together to explore how to make sport safer for children. With the vision of all children, everywhere, safe in sport, the initiative’s mission is to support and influence organisations and governments responsible for the policy environment in sport, and organisations involved in the delivery of sport, to develop their policies and practice to make sport safer for children. The initiative directly involves 60 organisations across six continents, but through our network, the reach and impact of the Safeguards is far greater.

  • On this Universal Children's Day, on 20 November, we are introducing a social media campaign which aims to help promote and publicise the Safeguard resources (available in multiple languages) to organisations outside of our current scope.
  • And with the support and active engagement of the existing partners in the initiative, we will start a conversation around safe sport using the hashtags #ItStartsWithYou #BeAChampionForChildren

Q: Tell us about Working Group 1

Working Group 1 is responsible for ‘Advocacy and Communications’ on behalf of the International Safeguarding Children in Sport Initiative and reports into the Advisory Body. The group has 19 members, all representing a cross-cutting mix of international and local organisations engaging in sport, development and children’s rights worldwide.

As part of its core mandate, WG1 is responsible for ensuring relevant organisations know about the safeguards and are encouraged to strengthen safeguarding.

Q: What do you hope to achieve through the campaign?

Ultimately, increased visibility of the Safeguards across more individuals and organisations, in more countries worldwide. We want people and organisations to know where to go and find the Safeguards and how to start the journey. We hope that by enabling this remarkable network of organisations to get behind the campaign today, our collective voice will help us extend the reach of the Safeguards beyond the current network.

Q: Why are the international safeguards important?

The Safeguards are a great resource, developed in multiple languages, backed by research which demonstrates that when implemented they make sport safer for children and participants. It’s incumbent on us to ensure as many organisations from grassroots community based entities to international federations know about this resource and commit to action.

Q: Why did you choose social media?

The world is increasingly connected via social media, and we know that it is the quickest and easiest way to activate our existing network to spread the message of the Safeguards. As a voluntary international working group with limited resources, it was important for us to focus on starting the conversation and creating a platform that future campaigns can build upon.

Q: How can readers take part?

We have developed a series of campaign messages that have been translated into 11 languages including Arabic, Spanish and Indonesian. Please get behind the campaign by following @SafeInSports Twitter account and the International Safeguards for Children in Sport Facebook page, and re-tweeting and sharing the messages on your own handles.

Remember #itstartswithyou.


Operating Team