If you think someone is at immediate risk of harm please contact the Police by dialling 999

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Safeguarding: Our Ethos

Church should be a place where everyone can feel safe. We will never be perfect, but we can work together to make our churches safer. Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility - and it needs to be at the heart of everything we do - so we all need to be on the look-out for signs of harm and abuse.

We need to be vigilant so that if something doesn’t seem right, then we’ll spot it. We can’t assume ‘that kind of thing’ won’t happen here – it can and it does. But we can work together to make our churches safer and to minimise the risks of harm and abuse.

To do that we need to listen to that gut feeling that tells you when something isn’t right. And, in safeguarding, if it doesn’t feel right then chances are it’s not. If there’s a situation that doesn’t feel right then our Diocesan Safeguarding Advisors are here to help. If you’re concerned about someone or something, just call them (details below) and they’ll offer support and advice. Don’t worry that you might be wasting their time – they’re here to help and a two minute phone call may be all it takes to get you the support and reassurance you need. In making that call, you could be providing the missing piece of a jigsaw that helps to keep someone else safe.

Safeguarding is about caring for one another and looking out for one another – and each of us has a crucial role to play in that. Our churches can be safer if we all work together.

Past Cases Review 2

Past Cases Review 2 is a Church of England commissioned independent review of safeguarding cases and practice over the last ten years. The national Church of England Past Cases 2 Report was published on 5 October 2022 -  both the national report and an Executive Summary of the Canterbury Diocesan and Cathedral Report are available here

Our Safeguarding Team

Diocesan Safeguarding Advisers

Our Safeguarding Advisers are qualified and experienced social care practitioners who can provide advice and guidance to parishes and others in the diocese on child and adult protection. They can offer advice, discuss any protection matters and clarify anything in the Diocesan Guidelines. They are always ready to work with you to plan a detailed response to any  protection issue, taking into account all aspects of your particular situation. Please do not hesitate to contact them; they are always very ready to help.

Make a referral to safeguarding

Contact Us

Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser Fiona Coombs

Fiona Coombs

Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser
07548 232395

Ashford, Dover, East Bridge, Elham, Romney, Sandwich, Stour Valley (previously West Bridge), Thanet, Vineyard

Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser Paul Brightwell

Paul Brightwell

Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser
07398 009951

Canterbury, Maidstone, North Downs, Ospringe, Reculver, Sittingbourne, Weald

Safeguarding Trainer

Safeguarding Administrator Karen Carolan-EvansKaty Harper

Safeguarding Trainer
01227 473565

DBS Checking & Support

Safeguarding Administrator Karen Carolan-Evans

Michelle Grice

Safeguarding Administrator
01227 459401

Kent County Council services

  • Main contact: 03000 41 41 41
  • Adult social services & health: 03000 41 61 61
  • Children & Families Information Service: 03000 41 23 23
  • Children’s social services: 03000 41 11 11

Annual Safeguarding Conference 2023

The Dioceses of Canterbury and Rochester jointly hosted the 2023 Annual Safeguarding Conference on the 21st January.  The opening address and prayer was delivered by the Rt Revd Rose Hudson-Wilkin, Bishop of Dover, with the first session led by Maisie Adkins the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) team manager for Medway, explaining the role of the LADO.  The second session was delivered by Professor David Shemmings on ‘What science might tell us about trauma’ (this section is not included online but can be made available on request to the Diocesan Safeguarding Team through our email address  The closing remarks and prayer was led by the Rt Revd Dr Jonathan Gibbs, Bishop of Rochester.


You can find our other safeguarding conference videos on our YouTube playlist.

Page last updated: Thursday 4th January 2024 12:39 PM
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