National Safeguarding Unit (NSU) - Safe Activities For Everyone

Photographing and recording children during an event or activities. 

Young boy taking a picture with toy camera 


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Getting it right  

Family and friends want to be able to share the successes of their children, when they have been part of special events or activity.

The Safe Network strongly recommends that for best practice, appropriate procedures should be set to ensure a safe environment for all children and young people.

New technology provides a better, clearer and faster way to communicate than in the past. Mobile phones, digital devices and video cameras allow people to take images and circulate instantly. 

For most children and young people this enables them to share their delight immediately but for some these images have unfortunate consequences and there are occasions when this is not case, below are some risks that could be associated with photographing children and young people:

  • Identification of children when a photograph is accompanied by personal information
  • Taking of inappropriate photographs or recorded images of children
  • Inappropriate use, adaptation or copying of images
  • Risk posed directly and indirectly to children and young people through the use of photographs on websites and other publications when they are accompanied by personal information.

Children and young people should be made aware of the dangers that can arise from people taking photos or filming them. It is key that children and young people feel happy with their achievements and have visual aids to reinforce their special moments.

Clubs and organisations should try and develop a policy to use for images of children and young people that are going to be used in publications, on the groups website and on social networking sites.
The club will need to ensure that parents, carers, family memmbers and others understand the policy.

If organisations are aware of the potential risks and dangers and put appropriate measures in place, the potential for misuse of images can be reduced. 

Next steps 

Young girl with cuddly toyFor parents and carers
How do you make sure that your children are safe when taking part in activities in the local community? This page will assist you.

Writing policies
Help with writing child protection policies and procedures

More from the web

ChildLine 0800 1111: get help and advice about a wide range of issues, talk to a counsellor online, send ChildLine an email or post on the message boards.

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