We want St Mary’s and St Michael’s churches to be safe places for everyone, and we take seriously our duty to care for all God’s people in our two churches.

The respective Parochial Church Councils of St Mary’s and St Michael’s are both committed to implementing the House of Bishops’ safeguarding policies and good practice guidance, as detailed in the Parish Safeguarding Handbook.

A formal statement to adopt the House of Bishops’ “Promoting a Safer Church; safeguarding policy statement” was agreed by the Parochial Church Council for each church and recorded in the minutes of their respective meetings, most recently in each case at their meetings in June 2022 (in Offham) and June 2022 (in West Malling).

Our Benefice Safeguarding officer is Andrew Rathbone and he is also the local lead for St Mary’s, West Malling. The local lead for St Michael’s, Offham is Julie Casburn.

Safeguarding is a regular item on the agenda of all PCC meetings in both parishes. We follow the guidance from the Diocese of Rochester, and national church as it is issued from time to time, and we also follow guidance for all people working with children, young people or vulnerable adults and ensure they are safely recruited, have undergone appropriate training and are DBS checked.

Safeguarding information is displayed at all our church activities involving children and young people and can be seen on our church noticeboards.

If you have any queries in regard to safeguarding in either of our churches, please contact us and we will do our best to answer your enquiry. The Diocesan Safeguarding Team can be contacted by calling 01634 560000 with a request to ask for the Safeguarding Team.