Kent and Yorkshire have become the first counties to achieve SafeGolf accreditation and are now encouraging others to follow suit.
England Golf is committed to ensuring all clubs and counties provide a safe environment for the sport to be played in and SafeGolf accreditation will help everyone deliver on this pledge.
Partnership managers are available to provide counties with specific template documents, clarify procedures and offer support and advice in the drive to achieve mandatory accreditation by January 2021.
Kent county secretary Sarah McDonald appreciates the value of SafeGolf and is urging all counties to make an early start in the accreditation process.
Sarah said: “There’s no point in us, as a county, cracking the whip to clubs about welfare and safeguarding if we didn’t do it ourselves and take a lead.
“The England Golf templates are really useful and the partnership managers are available to help to guide everyone through the process.
“We are very, very passionate about our junior golf and making sure the game is both safe and fun for participants.
“Aside from juniors and young people, we do have other vulnerable groups to take care of including those with Alzheimer’s or autism.
“It is also worth remembering that this safeguarding is also for the adults who deal with juniors or vulnerable groups.
“We’re very proud of our certification and its already on our letterheads and the website homepage.
“The key thing with SafeGolf was to make it achievable and renewable. It’s one thing to attain it, now we must maintain it.”
Yorkshire were also quick off the mark to earn their accreditation despite being the biggest county in England and having the largest number of volunteers and staff to put through the process.
Their officers have welcomed a SafeGolf system which ushers in a consistency of standards.
Yorkshire’s Philip Woodcock, county junior organiser, said: “By achieving SafeGolf accreditation as a county we hopefully have set the example to encourage others to go through the process in the year ahead.”