Swim England

A nation swimming

Wavepower: FAQs


Wavepower covers any individual participating in aquatics under the jurisdiction of Swim England, including but not limited to, Swim England members, volunteers, staff, board members, coaches and teachers, swim school members and parents/guardians of child members.

See above on web page.

No. Wavepower will remain digital which will allow us to make changes and notify you of these.

Yes. Whenever key changes are made to Wavepower, these will be issued to all Members.

We do not expect our Members or Organisations to be experts on the difference between these three topics. However, we have some guidance on what we would look for at Swim England.

Safeguarding: any physical, emotional, sexual abuse or neglect, or serious and sustained bullying or harassment. Any of these could have caused, be causing, or likely to cause, significant harm to a person. Anything that needs to be referred to a statutory agency such as the LADO or Police.

Welfare: any low-level issue or breaches of Wavepower that is causing an element of harm.

Code of conduct: any behaviour or breach of either the Organisation's own Code of Conduct, or that of Swim England's Code of Ethics by any Member.

'Organisation' means any company, incorporated or unincorporated association, charity, organisation or body affiliated to Swim England by any means, including, but not limited to swimming clubs, swim schools, county associations, and regions.

Changing rooms/villages

Swim England Safeguarding & Welfare Team have defined this as a piece of portable electronic equipment that can connect to the internet. Our main concern is around the risk of the use of devices that have the ability to take pictures or record videos.

Swim England has seen a significant rise in incidents regarding inappropriate use of mobile devices within changing rooms/villages. In the last year, Swim England Safeguarding & Welfare Team have dealt with over 40 cases linked to the inappropriate use of mobile devices in changing rooms. Any use of a mobile device in a changing room blurs the lines and boundaries.

Yes. Swim England would not penalise an individual for use of a mobile device to gain emergency support for someone in need.

It would need to be made clear that there has been a change of use of the facility from a changing room to a meeting place. You would have to have sole use of the facility at that moment. Everyone needs to be dressed etc. It should be incorporated into the organisation risk assessment and communicated to all of the Members.

Yes, of course this could be used within the privacy of a cubicle. It would be best practice if someone within the Organisation was aware that this was happening.

Yes, they can. What we are trying to achieve is that no-one ever sees your mobile device in a changing area and it should remain within a Member’s bag at all times.

Safeguarding Course

As a National Governing Body, we have a responsibility to all our members, especially our children, to ensure our safeguarding training courses are part of a proactive approach to creating a safe culture. We also have a duty of care to educate members in positions of trust or responsibility with the relevant, specific and appropriate information for our aquatic environments. This decision to only accept the Swim England course from January 2024 was based on a number of factors, and ensuring we align with other NGBs.

In attending a Swim England safeguarding course, we can be confident members are receiving a bespoke course, and the content design has been based on the trends of concerns and scenarios in an aquatic environment. In addition, we must not forget the opportunity to network, collaborate and share ideas when we are in attendance. Creating the content for our courses enables us to embed the key messages, update information, and signpost to policies, which generic courses don’t provide.

Quality assurance and standardisation are important to the organisation, and understanding what our members are being educated on ensures everyone is receiving the same message. If we continue to approve affiliated external bodies, we will have to quality assure every course to ensure it is fit for purpose, which we aren’t able to do.

Once your course has been finished, there is no need for you to send your certificate in to Swim England as our internal systems will ensure this added to your membership record. Please keep a copy of your certificate safe for your own records.

However, if your Swim England Safeguarding certificate is not showing on your membership record, please contact the Renewals Team (renewals@swimming.org) with a copy of your certificate, Swim England membership number and full name.

Anyone in a role requiring the training who is aged 16 or over will be required to undertake this course.

Further details on the workshop, availability and booking a workshop in your area can be found at: https://swimenglandqualifications.com/cpds/


Course nameWho needs to undertake?Model of delivery
Swim England Safeguarding CPD – 3 hr Anyone aged 16+ years old that requires a DBS check for their role.Online face-to-face – tutor ledCurrently delivered in partnership with IoS and other approved training centres
Welfare Officer Training (Time to Listen) – 3 hrWelfare Officers.Online face-to-faceCurrently delivered in partnership with UK Coaching and the Swim England regions
Swim England Safeguarding RefresherAnyone aged 16+ years old that requires a DBS check for their role and has completed the 3 hour face-to-face Swim England CPDOnline – learner ledCurrently delivered in partnership with IOS

Anyone requiring the course as outlined above who is new into a role, or has a certificate that is about to expire.

It also needs to be undertaken by those aged 16-17 years old and are either presently in a role that requires, or moving into a role that requires the course, as of January 2024.

No, the Swim England Safeguarding course needs to only be completed when your current approved safeguarding certificate is up for renewal. For example, if you complete a certificate on 31st December 2023, you won’t have to renew it until 31st December 2026. (However, we always advise you to consider attending a Swim England safeguarding course sooner, if able to, for the reasons stated).

You will then need to attend a Swim England safeguarding course at the point of renewal and after 3 years you then have the option to choose which safeguarding refresher you want to complete before repeating the Safeguarding course after another 3 years.

Welfare Officer Training and role

Swim England has made this to change to fall in line with the best practice in safeguarding in other sectors to ensure those responsible for safeguarding are kept up to date on current trends, legislation and policy.

If you are a Swim England Club, please contact your regional office - https://www.swimming.org/swimengland/regions/

If you are an affiliated Swim School, please contact Learn to Swim at learntoswim@swimming.org with the details of the person who will be undertaking the course.

Once your course has been finished, there is no need for you to send your certificate in to Swim England as our internal systems will ensure this is added to your membership record. Please keep a copy of your certificate safe for your own records.

However, if this is not showing on your membership record, please contact the Regional Office with your certificate, Swim England membership number and full name.

Wavepower is clear that any Welfare Officer must be independent of the Club Chair or proprietor of a Swim School and any coaches or teachers. You need to make every effort to meet the standards for the independence of the Welfare Officer as set out in Wavepower. We are supportive of a transition period for those in conflicting roles and additional measures must be considered to support your Members. Any transition must be completed by 1 August 2024. Please ensure you contact your regional team or Swim England on clubdevelopment@swimming.org to discuss this situation.

It must be someone who can meet the standards that are set out in Wavepower, particularly around the independence of the role and can meet the responsibility of the core tasks.

Any Welfare Officer appointed should have the relevant background and training to undertake the role. Safeguarding training and DBS checks should be completed before they expire. The Welfare Officer information session should be completed prior to the club affiliation renewal or county governance submission.

Adult safeguarding

Previous editions of Wavepower did not cover the important, and developing, area of adult safeguarding. For the first time, Wavepower now includes an adult safeguarding policy as well as directions on reporting concerns about adults at risk of harm. With that in mind, Masters and adult-only clubs will now need to appoint an identified lead welfare officer. This is an important requirement of the Club Affiliation process to reassure members that a club is operating in a safe and compliant way and has achieved the minimum standard of safe and effective practice. As this is a new requirement, clubs will be given the necessary support and time to appoint an identified lead welfare officer. To find out more on the key aspects of the role and training required, please click here.

It must be someone who can meet the standards that are set out in Wavepower, particularly around the independence of the role and can meet the responsibility of the core tasks.

No, one Welfare Officer can be the lead for both Clubs if they feel they have the capacity.

No, it will be included as part of the Swim England Safeguarding training launching in 2024.

Safer Recruitment

This information can be found in Wavepower and there is further information on the website. If a person holds more than one role, and one of the roles requires a DBS, then it is a requirement to undertake the DBS that is listed for the role.

For more information, please visit https://www.swimming.org/swimengland/dbs-faqs/ or email dbs@swimming.org.

Everyone - Any Organisation recruiting someone into a paid position must comply with the safer recruitment guidance within Wavepower.

For voluntary positions, the Organisation must ensure the appropriate checks and training are completed before someone starts in the role.

Paid regulated activity = application form, two references, written role description and interview including questions on approaches to safeguarding, DBS, Safeguarding and appropriate qualifications.

Voluntary regulated activity = best practice to have the above but only the DBS, Safeguarding, Welfare Officer (Time to Listen) training (for Welfare Officers) and appropriate qualifications is mandatory to safeguard members.

Please visit www.swimming.org/swimengland/dbs-faqs in the first instance, and then contact dbs@swimming.org for any queries.

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