Safeguarding Adults Week 2023 Key Themes – Safeguarding Yourself and Others

Safeguarding Adults Week 2023 takes place from Monday 20 – Friday 24 November 2023. 

It’s an opportunity for organisations to come together to raise awareness of important safeguarding issues. The aim is to highlight key safeguarding key issues, start conversations and raise awareness of safeguarding best practice. Each day, we’ll be focusing on a different safeguarding theme which relates to how individuals and organisations can safeguard themselves and others.

Getting involved in Safeguarding Adults Week!

During Safeguarding Adults Week 2023, we are focusing on how you can prioritise the welfare and wellbeing of yourself and others.  

There’s a strong link between safeguarding and mental and physical wellbeing. If someone’s wellbeing is suffering, they may consider certain actions that put them at risk. The concept of ‘wellbeing’ is threaded throughout UK legislation and is part of the Law about how health and social care is provided.  Our wellbeing includes our mental and physical health, our relationships, our connection with our communities and our contribution to society. Being able to live free from abuse and neglect is a key element of wellbeing.

Any actions taken to safeguard an adult must take their whole wellbeing into account and be proportionate to the risk of harm. We should work with people to understand what matters to them and consider their beliefs, views and feelings when offering support.

We would like to encourage you to think about what wellbeing means to you and what this means for the people you support during Safeguarding Adults Week 2023. We have selected themes for each day of the week, and hope these themes will guide you to enhance your knowledge and understanding of safeguarding adults within your organisation and communities.

It’s important we look out for yourself and others. During the week, we will be exploring effective strategies for how individuals and organisations can promote the wellbeing of staff, volunteers and the people they support.

Monday: What’s My Role in Safeguarding Adults?

On day one of Safeguarding Adults Week 2023, we want to encourage individuals and organisations from a diverse range of sectors to come together and consider ‘what’s my role in safeguarding adults?’ Safeguarding adults is relevant and important in all sectors. Safeguarding is the responsibility of all staff, volunteers and individuals within an organisation or the wider community. On this day, we will be sharing resources to raise awareness of what safeguarding is and how it applies to everyone.

We would love to hear about safeguarding in the context of your role or why you think safeguarding is important in your industry. Use the hashtag #SafeguardingAdultsWeek to share your experience with us on social media.

Tuesday: Let’s Start Talking – Taking The Lead on Safeguarding in Your Organisation

Creating a safer organisational culture is vital in promoting the wellbeing of staff, volunteers and the people they support.  It is important that organisations create environments where everyone is confident their concerns are welcomed, listened to and addressed appropriately.
Organisations should encourage continuous learning and reflection and lead with positive actions and values to ensure people have the confidence to challenge and instigate change.

On this day, we want to encourage people to reflect on the culture in their organisation. What is working well in terms of promoting the wellbeing of people within the organisation. Or, what could be improved? We will be running a seminar to discuss these ideas further and would welcome people sharing good practice about what is working well in their organisation.

Wednesday: Who Cares For The Carers? Secondary and Vicarious Trauma

Anyone who supports others or engages empathetically with people that may have experienced trauma as part of their day-to-day role can experience vicarious trauma as a result. The BMA explains that vicarious trauma can involve being preoccupied with thoughts about those you support outside of work, feeling angry or sad about the situation of people you support, struggling to maintain professional boundaries or trying to avoid listening to people’s experience of trauma.

On this day, we want to raise awareness of vicarious trauma and provide tools and effective strategies that enable staff and volunteers to promote their own wellbeing when safeguarding others.

Thursday: Adopting a Trauma Informed approach to Safeguarding Adults

Trauma-informed practice encourages practitioners that may be supporting people within their role, to consider how trauma exposure can impact an individual’s ability to function and achieve mental, physical, social, emotional or spiritual wellbeing. Trauma-informed practice encourages us to think about what we need to know to be able to respond to people affected by trauma, understanding the person and what is important to them.

This day will aim to provide information about what trauma informed practice is and why it is important. We will encourage organisations to think about how a trauma-informed approach could be beneficial for staff, volunteers and the people they are supporting. We will also provide practical tools to support organisations and practitioners to adopt a trauma-informed approach.

Friday: Listen, Learn, Lead – Co-Production With Experts by Experience

Co-production is usually where service providers and users work together to reach a collective outcome. The idea behind co-production is that those who are affected or use a service, are best placed to help design it.

On this day, we want to continue conversations about what is means to be involved in co-production and facilitate discussions about good practice. Implementing co-production can be challenging and complex. We want to encourage people to share their experiences of being involved in co-production and reflect on what has worked well and what could be improved in the future.