Simon Vorley

Simon Vorley

Simon is currently the Transition Officer & Global Safeguarding Lead at an INGO. He has led projects and operations in India, East Africa and Latin America over the past 12 years.

Location Bristol, UK



  • Completely agree @LénaPuech we so often don’t take the time we should to do this.

  • Translation is an important point @SolomonSimon as these documents can contain confusing language that is extra tricky for those working in a second language.

  • A nice example of a game we could all use in our training sessions @LeeNgirazie

  • @LeeNgirazie yes, that link applies to all learners.

    @AndrewShirima on the course homepage you can find links and information about payment options

    The free version of the course won’t be available to learners for much longer. A payment will be required to...

  • Thank you @SSugden for painting a clear and relatable picture for us here.

    I would like to add that whilst we do look towards managers or senior leaders to address unacceptable behaviour to some degree we can all show this leadership. This again depends on having a culture of trust but also links back to the idea that we are all responsible for safeguarding.

  • Great to hear that training is being conducted within your organisation @ElizabethMbaluto

    How regular will the training be from now on?

  • A reminder to everyone that this week (2nd May - 8th May) will be the last one with Mentors engaging with comments. We hope you have enjoyed the course and look forward to interacting with you on this crucial last week. Best of luck everyone!

  • Couldn’t agree more @MatthewAshcroft

  • Please could we encourage all learners to complete the short survey via the link above. Thank you

  • Very interesting point. Does this resonate with anyone else?

  • Thank you @SolomonSimon for sharing this useful example of your learning in action

  • The MDS ran a webinar this week introducing elements of the scheme and they answered a question similar to this. In short they are aware that in each country employment and data laws are distinct and complex. They work with organisations on the scheme to help them navigate these challenges.

    The webinar and/or presentation should be available soon on their...

  • @ElizabethMbaluto are there some specific questions we can help you out with?

    When you mention the policies of your organisation are these aimed at staff members or community members?

  • Very good point @SubhalaxmiMohanty

  • Absolutely, I would add that we often want things to happen according to our timelines or deadlines which are likely to be different to those of the communities.

  • Thank you @MariaTwerda for this insight into how your organisation is addressing it's own safeguarding culture. Very useful to hear about what has worked well for you.

  • Very true. How many of us currently have this at our organisations?

  • @LeeNgirazie please could you explain more about the process your organisation takes to complete checks after recruitment?

  • An amazing analysis of the situation in your country.

    Also a reminder of how complicated the answer to the question above is because our societies are complex.

  • Great point @MariaTwerda

    Especially interesting to hear you mention that aspects have a HQ focus which doesn't transfer well to the context elsewhere.

    Can anyone else relate to this situation?

    How can we ensure policies and procedures are fit for all contexts we work in and not simply a top down approach from the HQ?

  • Thank you @SubhalaxmiMohanty for mentioning the importance of creating an enabling culture. Simply having a reporting mechanism is not enough.

  • Great point @EdithIlo and in fact it would be ideal if more organisations could be locally led or locally rooted so that cultural nuisances such as these don't need to be explained so often.

  • @MariaTwerda I very much like your final comment there.

    Accountability is about using our power with integrity.

  • @ElizabethMbaluto this depends somewhat on how much Tasmin (or others) trust the internal reporting and response mechanism. Even under excellent circumstances the organisation may not be well placed to handle the situation.

    Also what actions could be taken by the organisation that might be satisfactory for Tasmin to feel that 'justice has been...

  • I agree with your point @EmanMusleh and also with @SharonWebb that this takes time.

    As culture changes organically over time and as a result of both internal and external pressure. However suggesting that we should influence an existing (non-organisational) culture is potentially dangerous.

    What actions can we/ have we taken to address the issue raised...

  • Thank you @SharonWebb for sharing your experience.

    You are absolutely right that we must be aware of unsatisfactory outcomes. This can be one of the most difficult aspects of being a safeguarding professional.

    More to come on adopting a survivor centred approach later in the week.

  • Hello @NoorAl-Shibani you can find information about how to get a certificate at this link

    As you will see this requires a payment and to have completed at least 90% of the course steps.

  • Do try to watch the video when you can @Mariesamson because it is excellent. You can also find it on YouTube here

  • A great point @SubhalaxmiMohanty

    How many times are we presented with a long document that we can’t fully comprehend or digest. There are other ways to present the information.

    Does anyone have examples of methods that work for them?

  • Thanks for sharing @MatthewAshcroft its great to hear about what learners have planned and how this course is contributing to those plans. Best of luck for your training plans and the role in general.

  • Very true @MatthewAshcroft

    Could it also be the case sometimes that we don’t ask because it would make our work more complicated?

    Has anyone encountered colleagues suggesting that extra steps to ensure consent or understanding would be too bureaucratic?

  • Great to have you with us @MichaelSuakDoLian

  • Thanks @RebeccaHL all good points. Could you be specific about what senior leaders leading by example might look like in practice?

  • Interesting point about dual sim devices @MichaelSuakDoLian

    If my device has a work sim and a personal sim does this resolve the issue of using personal technology to contact participants or make it more complex?

  • Very true @SaraHelenaMelgarejoBeltrán and even better if those complaints can be shared on a massive scale such as the Misconduct Disclosure Scheme as we see on the next step.

  • Hi @EricMcKinnon if you haven't already then do click on the PDF at the bottom of the content which provides an annotated version.

    The ladder is a helpful visualisation of power dynamics between children (or those without power) and decision makers. I've used it in workshops where people simply hadn't ever thought about those power dynamics before because...

  • That's good to hear @MichaelSuakDoLian

    Do you have any thoughts on actions you might be able to take now that you have this learning?

  • Fantastic to hear this feedback @SinayiKasibante

  • Great points @Mariesamson that draw out how complex safeguarding can be.

    Although some efforts were made to prevent and respond to incidents it is still possible for harm to occur if these aren't connected, coordinated and communicated.

  • @ZacharyZervas I agree. This is often known as risk appetite and is useful to consider before you start your assessment to avoid any bias.

    I've found in some organisations that the risk analysis and assessment is a box ticking exercise or an afterthought at which point it's very tricky to get people to stop the activity or research.

  • Again the importance of regular update and review. Seems so simple but as people have mentioned here and elsewhere often a mapping or analysis is done once and assumed to be accurate for too long. Thanks @EdithIlo

  • Sometimes bias can be unintentional. Does anyone have thoughts on actions that can be taken to avoid bias when completing this analysis?

  • Thank you @VioletRuria your comment makes me think about the level of informed consent that must be considered when undertaking research and also data security.

    For example if a participant gives consent do they really know how and where the information will be shared. Do researchers go far enough to ensure informed consent truly is informed?

  • @Brian,GeorgeKunkwenzu absolutely agree that our own governance and leadership should be reflective of intersectionality. In week 6 we will be looking at the important role of leadership in developing a safe organisational culture.

  • Great points @SubhalaxmiMohanty and as with Joan's point above the fluidity of vulnerability is vital.

    I like to think of this as a continuum where we may all be vulnerable at certain times and in certain situations. Nobody is fixed in place on the continuum but of course some individuals remain at the more vulnerable end due to factors mentioned in this...

  • There is no issue with checking analyses that have been completed by other professionals. It will be important to ensure that the context matches your own and there is no harm in completing an analysis yourself too.

  • Thanks for sharing Manjima, perhaps other learners or ourselves can help you get that clarity.

    Is there anything in particular you would like to know?

  • Hi Mayara, working out the gross risk is a useful thought exercise that helps us to consider how significant that risk is. The process of then working down a residual risk that you are comfortable with is also a helpful process. It is also useful to determine what your risk 'appetite' is, meaning what level of residual risk will you tolerate?


  • Thank you for mentioning situational factors @JoanSummers as too often individuals are deemed at-risk as if they are permanently in the same situation or environment.

  • Absolutely agree @MayaradeFreitas that there is a strong overlap with work to decolonize the sector and shift power dynamics.

  • @MayaradeFreitas great question. Perhaps if organisations engage with communities / users in general then including safeguarding in this approach would be easier?

    Any thoughts from others?

  • @HelenBryer welcome to the course! You'll hopefully be pleased to see that leadership and culture is addressed in week 6. Certainly a critical factor in the approach to safeguarding.

  • An important questions @GedaliahOdoyo and I'd encourage others to share their thoughts.

    The how safe questions has at least two sides, what might happen if you do report and what might happen if you don't?

    Any reporting channel requires trust (more on this in week 4) and has to be well organised and regulated. If you, like many people are wondering if...

  • @DagmawitTullu absolutely agree! It can be an uphill struggle looking for reasons to celebrate as a safeguarding lead or advocate. Celebrating wins and progress is vital.

  • @GedaliahOdoyo you mention solution mapping. Are you able to share a brief description of what this entails or perhaps share a link to a resource?

  • Welcome @elenasgorbati accountability is covered in week 5 though this looks more at proactive engagement of stakeholders.

    In week 4, under response, we will explore the topic of a survivor centred response and protecting whistle-blowers.

    As always we would encourage learners to constructively challenge the content and each other in the comments...

  • Great to hear that @ManjimaMadhuri

  • Thanks @elenasgorbati I'm pleased to hear that you have some actions in mind to take following this section.

  • Very true @SolomonSimon we have to ensure that policy turns into practice and that the correct behaviours are embedded into our organisations.

    Has anyone had any success in achieving this that they can share?

  • So many strong points here @ChelseaSommer

  • Excellent point @GillianKyalo that training often leads to adaptation and further training.

    @EmmaScullion week six of the course will address your question but I'd like to encourage other learners to share their suggestions here also. Any thoughts?

  • Great point @LénaPuech that although it may not be possible to get a message out to the whole community it is important to know the influencers and information hubs who can have a lasting positive impact.

  • Thanks for raising those points Julie. You will see that resources on this course come from a variety of sources.

    Resources from the Safeguarding Resource and Support Hub put an emphasis on SEAH as this was highlighted as a key concern and area for improvement at a sector wide summit in 2018. Of course SEAH is important but safeguarding is a broader topic...

  • Thanks Lee, a great summary

  • Welcome Jenipher, can you help us out with what the acronym PLWHA means please?

  • Welcome Manjima, you will find the topics you've mentioned as we move through the course. Risk (week 2), referral (week 4) and supporting at-risk groups at various stages. We look forward to hearing your thoughts as we go.

  • Hi everyone, it is excellent to see you engaging in this vital topic.

    We look forward to reading your thoughts and engaging in discussions with you over the coming weeks. Please do try to share your opinions and experience to add to the learning opportunities for us all.

  • Thank you @LauretaMuhongoMadegwa a very useful and tangible example.

  • Agree that specificity on who some of the referees need to be is useful and the idea of getting a more holistic reference from a co-worker or someone they managed is interesting.

    The idea of "blind" references would need to be handled carefully if possible at all given it isn't a very transparent approach. The employer needs to be careful to ensure they...

  • Anyone have thoughts on Hilary's question?

  • Any thoughts from other learners?

  • Great thoughts and reflections on your experience @GemmaAmadi thank you for sharing. I really like the 'skip line management' concept.

  • Interesting and valid point @KumarChandiramani about the time limit meaning the parties involved are better able to manage their mental health.

  • Good leaders are proactive. As you say @MollyCunningham 'without an event needing to occur'.

    Learning from an event/incident may often be the way but this means people have suffered when perhaps this could have been avoided by more active leadership.

  • Agree with your point @KatieSears that without a major issue to test policy and procedures some organisations can assume everything is working just fine.

  • Good point about not underestimating the importance of word of mouth @KatieSears

  • Do the mechanisms mentioned in the video seem accessible? Are there any others you would suggest or any adaptations you would expect to see?

  • Excellent to hear about some concrete steps you took after the initial push back. Thanks for sharing @JodyKelly

  • Great point about not going 'fishing' or becoming some sort of detective. It is vital to have as clear a response plan as possible to guide us through those tricky times where we aren't certain what to do or who to speak to first.

  • The subject of being a UK (or other) based organisation that works with/through local partners and the challenges this brings has come up several times.

    Has anyone had positive experiences collaborating with partners on safeguarding or other golden thread topics?

    Is there a balance to be struck between being paternalistic and empowering for example?

  • 100% agree with all the comments above. Investment in safeguarding sends a strong message especially as there can often be tough competition for the funds.

  • How networked are the Country Directors @JodyKelly ?

    Would it be possible for the good role model you mention to positively influence other Directors?

  • Such an important point @AnneWuijts

  • Well said @BonnieKlassen with reminders of how important it is to ensure organisational culture is high on everyone's agenda.

    Interesting that you mention a 'whisper network', something I can relate to. More on the subject of whispers coming up later in the week.

  • Good point @HannahNdungu that some actions taken can have unintended consequences. I also saw this during the initial stages of the pandemic when there was pressure to adapt quickly.

  • Sounds very interesting and empowering @HannahNdungu

  • Hi @JacquelineCox thank you for sharing your situation. We have heard from other learners about how conservation organisations are now taking steps in safeguarding and the challenges that can be faced.

    I would encourage you that these are very normal and similar challenges to any other organisation and the important thing is to be selective about which are...

  • Interesting to hear how you complete additional screening of applicants @PabloS

    Could you provide more details as to how you would approach others who haven't been put forward as references in an appropriate manner?

  • Such a good analogy. Thank you for sharing @PatriciaDoutriaux

  • @PabloS great to hear about the reality of the situation at your organisation.

    The subject of metadata is one that hasn't come up previously and could be a level of detail not considered by many organisations without either an IT department or staff who are aware of such details.

    Thank you for sharing.

  • A good reminder @PabloS that sometimes law isn't up to speed with best practice. I agree with you that we need to be super cautious in regard to social media and consider the morals or ethics of our use of these platforms.

  • Yes thank you for picking up on this. We will feed this back to the course writers.

  • Thank you @SarahMaguire for these important clarifications. As learners have mentioned elsewhere, starting with clear and simple definitions of terminology can make a big difference.

  • Hi @PatriciaDoutriaux thank you for your reflections. Lots of thought provoking comments. As you rightly point out there may not be answers to some questions within this context.

    In my opinion it is important to consider the big picture from time to time and how at times it feels like change isn't happening fast enough. However, I also believe that in many...

  • Thanks @BlessingsKadzuwa do you have examples of what others were doing that you decided to take up yourselves?

  • Excellent points all! @HannahMills you are right that there is a danger that doing half a job could lead to a lack of engagement from stakeholders, including staff or worse some kind of negative impact.

  • Thank you for this reflection @BonnieKlassen

  • Some ideas @GrahamSymons from my understanding of some of the work of Integrity Action.

    Community monitors are likely to undergo a selection and briefing/training process. They may be utilised on a rotational basis or work in clusters to prevent bias, fraud or intimidation.

    Often the monitoring includes taking a photo of some infrastructure and...

  • @FatmataJalloh I had this discussion with a organisation recently and am of the opinion that we should be clear about our standards with all types of partners whether we implement a project with them or not.

    There may be different levels of detail and obligation depending on the type of relationship but suppliers, donors etc are part of operations too. As...

  • @KumarChandiramani I think many would agree that organisations should not be driven or pushed too much by donors. Would you say this is currently a reality for most organisations though?

    @EvelynI a good point. Has anyone seen collaboration amongst donors on this or other topics? Some larger NGOs will have teams focussed on specific donors but whether that...