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SAFETY at the BGC of NCC

Child Safety is Job No. 1

Ensuring child safety is fundamental to the mission of the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County.

The Safety and Wellbeing of Young People is Our Number One Priority

We work every day to create a safe, fun environment so kids can have every opportunity to be successful in life. We have a ZERO tolerance for inappropriate behavior of any kind, including child sexual abuse or misconduct, and we put resources behind that stance.

Culture of Safety: The Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County continually updates robust safety policies, programs, and training for our staff and volunteers that are designed to promote child safety and protect young people from threats that are present in our society. We implement layers of safety policies and guidelines to keep our kids safe including, but not limited to:

  • Follow organizations' no one-on-one contact with youth, open-door policy

  • Minimum of 1 staff certified in CPR and First Aid will be on site at all times (Staff will renew certifications every 2 years)

  • Restroom Policy, separate bathrooms are maintained for youth and staff to ensure child privacy and safety

  • Supervision with a 1:20 ratio of staff to youth, and 1:10 ratio on Field Trips

  • ZERO Tolerance for Bullying Behaviors

Safety Policies: The Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County has comprehensive safety policies in place that protect youth - including but not limited to, supervision, transportation, communication, and prohibiting private one-on-one contact.

24-hour Toll-free Child Safety Hotline: We encourage staff, members and families to report any incident or situation they feel is unsafe. Through our national partnership with Praesidium, one of the nation's leading safety experts, The Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County members and staff have access to a confidential 24-hour toll-free Child Safety Hotline, 866-607-SAFE (7233) or email

Mandatory Background Checks: Mandatory criminal background checks are required every year for every staff and board member at the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County. In addition, criminal background checks are required for any volunteer who has direct contact with children. All potential employees and volunteers are also run through the National Sex Offender Registry. Boys & Girls Clubs of America is partnered with one of the largest background screening companies is America, First Advantage, to provide easy access to the most comprehensive screenings available. 

Required Immediate Reporting: The Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County staff and volunteers are all trained mandated reporters. We are required to report any critical incident/safety concern to local authorities immediately. We are also required to report any critical incident to Boys & Girls Clubs of America within 24 hours.

Mandatory Annual Safety Assessments: We complete a safety assessment each year to ensure we continually make improvements to safety at our Club.

Safety Trainings: Ongoing training and supervision of staff is critical. We participate in a wide variety of child safety training conducted such as Child Advocacy Program's (CAP) Safe Harbour Training to identify child trafficking,as well as CAP's "Less is More" training for mandated reporters and "Stewards of Children" training to combat child abuse. We also engage leading third-party safety experts to provide guidance for our policies and approaches, including Praesidium, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, and the National Children's Advocacy Center. 

Safety Committee: The Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County has a dedicated safety committee to provide input and guidance on local policies and safety strategies. Priorities and initiatives include:

  • Ensure and maintain a safe facility and environment for our youth

  • Provide input for development and improvement of safety policies and procedures

  • Review and respond to data

  • Inform Board of key safety initiatives

Mandatory Employee Reference: Any employee interested in moving to another Boys & Girls Club is required to have a reference from the previous Club, even if the Clubs are within the same community.

State and Local Laws: We comply with federal, state, and local safety laws, including those impacting facilities and vehicles.

Safety Partnerships: Nationally, Boys & Girls Clubs of America works with leading experts in the areas of safety, security and technology to develop state-of-the-art solutions for Clubs. Partners include:

  • National Child Safety Advisory Task Force, made up of leading experts and organizations

  • Blue Ribbon Taskforce, comprised of local Club leaders charged with providing input on the safety direction and key safety initiatives

  • Mental Health First Aide, a national program that teaches skills to recognize and respond to signs of mental illness and substance abuse

  • Crisis Text Line, a confidential text message service for youth in times of crisis

Locally, The Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County partners with:

Nationally, Boys & Girls Clubs of America has advocated the passage of the U.S. PROTECT Act, which improved background screening systems and access. The national organization has also partnered with the FBI, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, and the Centers for Disease Control to contribute to the development of safety practices that benefit ALL youth-serving organizations.

America's young people deserve nothing less than our constant focus on their safety and our firm commitment to protect every child who is entrusted to our care at the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County. To learn more about our national safety policies and actions, please visit Boys & Girls Clubs of America's Child Safety page, here


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