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Clubs urged to complete Stronger Affiliation in lockdown as deadline looms

Hundreds of clubs have been encouraged to complete a key administrative procedure during the second national lockdown – or be at risk of having their Swim England affiliation suspended.

The recognised national governing body has introduced a Stronger Affiliation process so its 411-affiliated clubs which are not currently SwimMark accredited can prove they are well run and their personnel have the necessary safeguarding checks in place to ensure members’ safety.

However, the deadline of 1 December for clubs to submit evidence so it can be checked and approved in order to coincide with membership annual renewals is looming.

Swim England is to host a workshop on Thursday 12 November at 5.30pm to show the clubs which are yet to complete the process how to upload the information required and detail the timescales.

Clubs can register their place on the workshop by emailing clubdevelopment@swimming.org.

Helen Weeks, Swim England Club Governance and Standards Manager, said: “With pools being unfortunately closed during the second national lockdown, this could be an ideal opportunity for clubs to complete the Stronger Affiliation process.

“So far, we have been pleased with the response from clubs but we want to ensure none of them are at risk of having their affiliation with us suspended.

“We’re keen to help out anyone who requires assistance and the workshop is an ideal way to find out how to complete the process.”

Clubs will be required to upload evidence to an online, user-friendly portal, which is currently used for SwimMark accreditations.

Six pieces of evidence required

Swim England has a total of 1,016 affiliated clubs and more than half of these are SwimMark accredited – the national governing body’s quality standard for clubs.

Consett ASC was the first club to complete Stronger Affiliation back in June and officials said it ‘was very easy’ to complete.

The club has since gone on to complete the full SwimMark Essential accreditation.

The following six pieces of evidence for clubs need to be provided by clubs who don’t have SwimMark or their accreditation has lapsed.

  1. Club Constitution – ensure club constitution has been checked by the region and is from 2018 Swim England Model Constitution onwards.
  2. Welfare Officer statement of compliance – signed statement of compliance by the Welfare officer stating the club is being run in accordance with WavePower guidelines. Please note, Masters clubs are exempt from this element.
  3. Club Chair statement of compliance – signed statement of compliance that the club is following Swim England Code of Ethics and has role descriptions within the club.
  4. Risk Assessments – provide Risk Assessments relevant to the activities of your club.
  5. Club Personnel Record – One PDF report downloaded from OMS detailing all club personnel in the following categories; Governance positions, Competition and Support roles, Technical Officials, Coaches and/or Teachers.
  6. Safeguarding certificate and Time to Listen certificate (from ASA (Swim England) approved course list) for Club Welfare Officer. Please note Masters Clubs are exempt from this element.

Any club that has issues logging on to complete the Stronger Affiliation process should email clubdevelopment@swimming.org.