Welcome to the Contextual Safeguarding Programme Website

This website provides an overview of the Contextual Safeguarding Research Programme, including its history, vision and mission, team, current suite of projects, and key publications.

To access the policy and practice resources created through this programme, and hear from practitioners and decision-makers who are using a Contextual Safeguarding approach in response to abuse in extra-familial settings please visit the virtual hub of the Contextual Safeguarding Practitioners’ Network on www.csnetwork.org.uk

What is Contextual Safeguarding?

Contextual Safeguarding is an approach to understanding, and responding to, young people’s experiences of significant harm beyond their families. It recognises that the different relationships that young people form in their neighbourhoods, schools and online can feature violence and abuse. Parents and carers have little influence over these contexts, and young people’s experiences of extra-familial abuse can undermine parent-child relationships.

Therefore, children’s social care practitioners, child protection systems and wider safeguarding partnerships need to engage with individuals and sectors who do have influence over/within extra-familial contexts, and recognise that assessment of, and intervention with, these spaces are a critical part of safeguarding practices. Contextual Safeguarding, therefore, expands the objectives of child protection systems in recognition that young people are vulnerable to abuse beyond their front doors.

Latest Publication

This briefing considers the extent to which changes made to Working Together to Safeguard Children in 2018, and the existing legislative underpinning that guidance, provide a sufficient policy and practice framework for adopting a Contextual Safeguarding approach.

Read full article here