Working with young people is key for the expansion of table tennis and with our many programmes the ETTA try to give the opportunities for young people to participate and help them on their way to achieving their sporting and social ambitions. It is very important that support is given to the volunteers, staff, players and parents by way of good practice guidelines and this document is part of the process.

We would fail as the National Governing Body for table tennis in England if programmes of training and competitions were not available for young people and at the same time, we must ensure that their welfare is a priority and the standards of all those involved is maintained.

This document was put together following many consultations and inputs and I would like to thank all of those involved and acknowledge the support given to the ETTA by the Child Protection in Sport Unit.

I wish all of our players every success now and in the future.

Alex Murdoch
ETTA Chairman


For the purposes of this policy and procedures, young person refers to anyone aged under 18 years.

Child abuse is a very emotive and difficult subject. Abuse can occur within many situations including the home, school and sporting environment. There are individuals who will actively seek employment or voluntary work with young people in order to harm them. All individuals involved in table tennis activities with young people have a responsibility to safeguard their welfare. When a young person enters a club having experienced child abuse outside of the sporting environment, table tennis can play a crucial role in building their confidence and improving self-esteem. The majority of young people who participate in table tennis do so in a safe and positive atmosphere with the support and encouragement of all those involved with our sport.

In 2003 the government launched the ‘Every Child Matters: Change for Children’ strategy. This major new strategy was developed to improve outcomes for all children and identified the following key outcomes for all children and young people:

• Be healthy
• Stay safe
• Enjoy and achieve
• Make a positive contribution
• Achieve economic well-being

‘Every Child Matters’ is supported by new legislation including the Children Act 2004 and new government guidance, ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children: A guide to interagency working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children’ (HM Government, 2006). Section 2.8 of the ‘Working Together’ guidance outlines the statutory duties, roles and responsibilities of all organisations that provide activities or services for children and young people.

All children and young people have a right to have fun and be safe in the activities they choose and parents/carers should be able to have confidence that the clubs to which they entrust their young people will look after them. Unfortunately sometimes young people’s experiences in sports clubs are not so positive. The ETTA recognises the organisation’s responsibilities and the need to safeguard against individuals who may abuse their position in table tennis. The ETTA by implementing this policy recognises young people’s rights to protection and that the needs of disabled young people and others who may be particularly vulnerable must be taken into account. Everyone working in table tennis, be it in a paid or voluntary capacity, has a role to play in safeguarding the welfare of young people and preventing their abuse, and can contribute to supporting children and young people in our sport to achieve the outcomes identified in Every Child Matters.

Coaches, officials and volunteers within table tennis who have regular contact with young people are important links in identifying situations that may suggest that abuse has or is occurring.

• accepts that as an organisation dealing with young people through coaching and competition, it has both a moral and legal obligation to ensure the highest possible standard of care is provided.
• will meet its obligations and responsibilities by implementing this Child Protection Policy and Guidelines throughout the sport.
• will take seriously and respond swiftly and appropriately to all suspicions and allegations of abuse, in accordance with these procedures. The ETTA will implement the appropriate disciplinary and appeals procedures as necessary.
• will recruit, train and supervise employees to adopt best practice to safeguard and protect young people from abuse and themselves against false allegations.
• requires all staff and volunteers to adopt and abide by the organisation’s code of conduct and child protection policy and guidelines.

Click here for the full ETTA’s Child Protection Policy & Guidelines, or view the individual sections through the links below:

Promoting Good Practice
What Is Abuse?
Recognition Of Poor Practice And Abuse
Responding To Young People
Responding To Suspicions Or Allegations
Allegations Against Coaches And Volunteers
Information Sharing
Security Of Data
Sample Reference Form
Sample Application Form
Incident Reporting Form
Quick Guide To Reporting Procedures
Parental Consent Letter Template
Sample Club Complaints Procedure
National School Sport Strategy
Managing Challenging Behaviour