Parents and Carers
Your job as a parent is one of the most difficult there is - it
can be both challenging and rewarding.
It is a job where very little training is given to prepare
parents for what lies ahead.
Patterns of family life vary and there is no one, perfect way to
bring up children. Good parenting involves caring for children's
basic needs, keeping them safe, showing them warmth and love and
providing the stimulation needed for their development and to help
them achieve their potential, within a stable environment where
they experience consistent guidance and boundaries. Parenting can
be challenging. Parents themselves require and deserve support.
Asking for help should be seen as a sign of responsibility rather
than as a parenting failure.
When things go wrong it does not mean that someone has failed -
things go wrong for everyone.
It is often the way difficulties are handled that can make a
difference to your children, both now and in the future.
There is no such thing as the perfect parent. However, there are
some ways that you can make it a less stressful and more rewarding
We want to help you ensure that all children in Bedford
Borough are healthy, happy, safe, achieve their best and
become responsible citizens. It is hoped this page and helpful
guidelines can offer some ideas and information to help you find
your way through what can be a maze of issues and advice. It gives
contacts and further information you can follow up when you are
deciding how to deal with your worries and difficulties. We have
also listed some of the warning signs of particular difficulties
and offer helpful tips.
Help for adults concerned about a child
Help and advice
0808 800 5000
NSPCC - The Underwear Rule
Teach your child the Underwear Rule and help protect them from
The Underwear Rule is a simple way that parents can help keep
children safe from abuse - without using scary words or mentioning
sex. Please click here to be re-directed to the
NSPCC website page.
NSPCC have developed a simple
guide for parents, and a
child-friendly version, to help you talk PANTS with your child.
Remind your child that they can always talk to you about anything
which worries or upsets them -
guide on talking tips. Parents questions you may have
about teaching your child the Underwear Rule -
Read questions and answers
The NSPCC and Mencap have launched a new version of the
successful Underwear Rule campaign. They have produced a guide to
help parents teach children who have a learning disability about
sexual abuse. Follow this link to take you to the leaflet.
The NSPCC's Underwear Rule campaign is being made more accessible
to Eastern European communities in the UK. The easy-to-read guides
have now been translated in to Russian, Polish, Lithuanian and
Underwear rule - children with Autism
Underwear rule - deaf children
Use of photos on websites and in other publications
The use of photos on websites and in other publications poses
direct and indirect risks to children and young people.
Organisations wishing to use images of the children they work with
or are otherwise in contact with must therefore have a policy in
place to safeguard the children involved.
Please click here for guidance
Protect - Confidential information and
advice from the Stop It Now campaign
If you are concerned about
Everyone has a responsibility for protecting and safeguarding
children, not just the ‘professionals’.
If you suspect or believe a child is suffering or is likely to
suffer Significant Harm, including any form of mistreatment or
abuse, you should report your concerns.
If a child is in immediate danger or left alone, you should
contact the police or call an Ambulance (Call 999).
The police operator will need to take your name, address and
details of what has happened. This will take time, but it is
important to get all of the information from you so that we can
send the appropriate resources to you if necessary.
If you think a child or young person is being abused or
mistreated or you have concerns about the safety or welfare of a
child, you must speak to someone immediately. You can ring the
Multi Agency Support Hub (MASH) on 01234
718700 (office hours) or ring 0300 300 8123 (out
If you want to discuss your concerns or need advice e.g. if you
not sure whether your concerns are justified, you would like more
information about issues like confidentiality or you would like to
know what happens next (after you have reported your concerns), do
one of the following:
Call NSPCC on Tel: 0808 800 5000 or Text: 88858. Email:
The NSPCC has published guidance for parents on how to spot the
signs of child sexual abuse. It sets out the signs that might
indicate a child is being sexually abused, and where to go for
information, support and advice. Click here
for the guidance.