Charity Run for Safe & Sound

Charity Run for Safe & Sound

Congratulations and thank you to Emma Healy at Kedleston Park Golf Club who has raised £1,000 for Safe and Sound after completing the Derby 10k.

Safe and Sound is the golf club captain Brian Spence’s chosen charity this year – inspiring Emma to enter the event for the first time.

Emma said: “I’m not a runner, and should’ve done more training – but I ran it in 77 minutes without stopping which I am very pleased with! The most painful part was starting and finishing at Pride Park considering I am a Forest fan!

“I am particularly grateful to all the members of Kedleston Park Golf Club and friends who have sponsored me for this charity which our Captain Brian Spence is championing this year, and have raised £1000. I also ran for the Ladies Captain charity which is Every Cloud so another £1000 is also going to them.”

Online CRE Workshop – Child Exploitation and online safety – 18th March 2024 -10am

Online CRE Workshop – Child Exploitation and online safety – 18th March 2024 -10am

Next week is #NationalChildExploitationAwarenessDay and as part of our awareness programme for March, Safe and Sound wanted to invite to join us for an online CRE Workshop – Child Exploitation and online safety:

When: Monday 18th March 2024
Time: 10am – 11am
Where: Online

Aims of the Workshop

By the end of the workshop, you should be familiar with:

What CRE is
Types of exploitation and risks
Additional vulnerabilities and risks to Young People with SEND
Signs of exploitation
Advice around school and the community
Advice around online dangers
Specific tools and tips for protecting your young people
Apps and Websites for additional protection and information

Book your place here – #derby #derbyshire #awareness

Meet Karen – A Change in Career Led to Safe & Sound

Meet Karen – A Change in Career Led to Safe & Sound

Karen Ritchie is a Family Support Worker at Safe and Sound and talks here about how returning to education has enabled her to change her career path and find the job that she loves.

My change of career path began eight years ago at the age of 47. Before I had my four children I worked as a full-time receptionist which I returned to part time after my eldest daughter was born. But, as my family grew, it was not financially viable as I would have paid more in childcare costs than I was earning. I therefore sought employment working unsociable hours which allowed me to look after my children during the day and my husband took over the childcare in the evenings.

It was during a college visit with one of my daughters that I made the decision that I would like to re-train and so my journey began and do something for me. I went to college in the evening to gain GCSE Maths and English. In my second year I also completed an access course in Health and Social Care level three with the intention of looking for employment.

I did not plan to apply to university as I did not consider myself to be academic enough to achieve a degree. Growing up in the 1980’s on a council estate, people and particularly girls like me did not attend university because I had left school with CSE’s. When I chose my options in secondary school I was encouraged to choose needlework, childcare, cookery and typing. I left school and secured a YTS training as a BT Telephonist.

However, as my college assignments were being marked with merit and distinction, my course leader persuaded me to apply for university which I did. I enrolled on the Youth Justice Course at Nottingham Trent. As a mature student I found studying challenging, it seemed to take me a longer to complete assignments than the younger students. Additionally, all four of my children were still at home so independent studying was difficult, and I would often work into the early hours to meet my deadlines.

During my final year Covid hit and as the country went into lockdown which brought additional challenges. I however graduated with a high 2:1. As part of my course I went on placement with a Youth Offending Team which led to me volunteering as a panel member with them.

During my trajectory of studying, I discovered my son was being exploited by his friend’s older sibling – selling and using drugs. As a family we all suffered the impact as it changes the atmosphere in the family home especially the outbursts, the worries for his safety and the drug testing. Fortunately, there was a turning point when he joined the RAF.

The combination of my degree, interest around County Lines and my lived experienced helped me secure my current position as a family support case worker. My role is to raise awareness with parents and siblings around exploitation, offer lots of emotional support and advocate on their behalf with statutory services. I help families with funding, housing and education and my professional knowledge of the youth criminal justice system has allowed me to help parents and their child through court.

Our parents are important partners in safeguarding their children so it is important that they are empowered to have a voice. I am particularly proud to have helped train some parents as mentors for others and also to produce resources to help inform and support other parents. I have developed a peer group where parents have a safe space, where they will not be judged or blamed and support each other.

Family support is not 9-5 so I need to be available late in the evenings for parents so that we don’t miss the opportunity of a reachable moment if, for instance, their child has been arrested. A parent may also need emotional support if their child is missing or has been harmed.

I love this job and my passion, hard work and empathy has enabled us to establish a family service in the city which has gained positive feedback from both parents and other professionals.

Having returned to education later in life, I am particularly pleased to have the opportunity to mentor colleagues and university students which has given me the further confidence to progress my own career.

How volunteering opened up new career opportunities for Shannon Rose

How volunteering opened up new career opportunities for Shannon Rose

Shannon Rose is Safe and Sound’s ChISVA Domestic Abuse Case Worker. Here she talks about how volunteering opened up new career opportunities for her.

I was changing careers and started volunteering at SHOUT, the crisis text line, and after speaking to people who had suffered sexual violence, I wanted to do more to help survivors.

After some research I was drawn towards an ISVA role (Independent Sexual Violence Advisor) but I needed to gain experience in the sector.

I came across Safe and Sound and after meeting with them and learning about the service, I became a volunteer, helping with outreach, youth clubs, and activities within the charity. I was given the opportunity to shadow a caseworker a few days a week to gain valuable experience working children and young people and learn more about CSE. In time, this was then turned into a part time role as a caseworker and, within a few months, this became full time, taking on a project that worked with children and young people that had experienced domestic violence in the home or was experiencing domestic abuse in their own relationships.

While I was working part time for Safe and Sound, I also got a job as a crisis worker in a Sexual Assault Referral Centre – supporting victims through a forensic medical examination after rape or sexual assault to add to my knowledge in the sexual violence sector. I was then given the opportunity to train to become the ISVA which I had always wanted to be within Safe and Sound. My role includes supporting young girls to speak up about sexual violence they have experienced and support them in their journey through the criminal justice system and help them with their recovery and empower them to take back control of their life and give them the support to do this.

This isn’t just a job to me, this is a vocation, and watching survivors grow makes this difficult job worthwhile.

Innovative App Provides Additional Security For Local Charity

Innovative App Provides Additional Security For Local Charity

Derbyshire’s specialist child exploitation charity Safe and Sound has piloted a new on-demand security service for its support workers and outreach teams.

Safe and Sound support young people and families across the county whose lives have been affected by child exploitation including online grooming, sexual exploitation, County Lines, trafficking, modern slavery and radicalisation.

Meanwhile, outreach workers and volunteers from the Derby-based charity are a regular and visible evening presence both in Derby city centre and in South Derbyshire. Their objective is to raise awareness of young people around grooming and exploitation, provide reassurance around community safety and gain the views of young people about services and support they needed to feel safer.

The team has been trialling ‘My Own Cop’, the new app-based alert system which has been developed by Steve Rimmington, a former police officer who founded Derby-based Repton Security in 2004.

Mr Rimmington explained: “The nature of policing has changed completely over the past two decades decades for many reasons and I know from speaking to former colleagues and with my 20 years’ experience in the security industry that there is now an increasing need for on-demand security and support.

“ is an app-based alert system which is particularly important for lone workers and small teams who need back up quickly and efficiently.

“Having successfully trialled this locally over the last year, with Repton Security providing the response, we now intend to roll this out across the UK and hopefully overseas by partnering with reputable security companies in each location.

“I have supported Safe and Sound in different ways over the years so I am delighted that they have come on board with My Own Cop to provide additional support for the workers and volunteers who do such a valuable job in our local communities.”

Safe and Sound CEO Tracy Harrison continued: “Although we already have robust safeguarding in place for our support and outreach team members, I was keen to have another layer of security in place for them.

“My Own Cop is a great idea and provides additional support and reassurance for staff in a wide range of roles.”

Safe and Sound Supports Safer Internet Awareness

Safe and Sound Supports Safer Internet Awareness

Derbyshire’s specialist child exploitation charity Safe and Sound has joined thousands of organisations across Europe to highlight the potential dangers of the internet – particularly for children and young people.
Safer Internet Day (Tuesday 6 February 2024) aims to encourage everyone to use technology responsibly, respectfully, critically and creatively and this year the focus is on the importance of age-appropriate digital services, with every child protected, empowered and respected online.

Safe and Sound is a highly-regarded local charity which specialises in protecting and supporting young people and their families across Derbyshire whose lives are affected by child exploitation including online grooming, sexual exploitation, County Lines, trafficking, modern slavery and radicalisation. It is supporting Safer Internet Day due to the growing prevalence of criminals using the internet to groom children and young people for their own purposes.

Safe and Sound CEO Tracy Harrison explained: “The latest national statistics show that there has been an 82% rise in online grooming crimes against children in the past six years since sexual communication with a child was officially recognised as a criminal offence.

“In the East Midlands alone, more than 2,600 online grooming crimes have been recorded by police during that time, which means that literally hundreds of children and young people in Derbyshire have been targeted by predators. “Last year, Safe and Sound supported a record 343 children and young people who had been victims of or at risk of child exploitation and, in the vast majority of cases, the grooming and abuse started online.”

Mrs Harrison continued that online grooming could involve young people being blackmailed into sharing indecent photographs of themselves; have been sent horrific images and pornography and, in some cases, have been coerced into meeting up with the perpetrators and subjected to life-changing emotional, physical and sexual abuse. “These figures are likely to be only the tip of the iceberg with many more young people too afraid or ashamed to ask for help – petrified that their abuser will mete out the retribution they have threatened or fearful that they will not be believed and somehow be blamed for what has happened.

“Furthermore, most people think that online grooming takes place on traditional social media channels but researchers have identified 150 different apps, games and websites being used to target children.” “Online grooming has therefore had a devastating effect on the lives of too many young people and their wider families and we need to do all we can to protect them. “Organisations such as ourselves who are committed to protecting and supporting children and young people who are at risk or are victims of child exploitation and I welcome the annual Safer Internet Day which highlights the need for the robust action to keep young people safe online.

“I particularly appeal to families to far more vigilant about the dangers online for young people. Please set the highest possible privacy settings on their social media, gaming and search engine apps and channels. “Most of us would question a young person as they leave the home about where they are going and who they are meeting. It’s the same for online activity so please have open and honest discussions about who they are talking to online and that not everybody is who they seem.”

For more advice and information, please visit

Media enquiries: Sarah Jenkin-Jones, JJPR, Tel: 01332 515102/07951 945665;
[email protected]