Safer Programming

Safer Programming

Safeguarding should be an integral element to all stages of projects and programmes, being actively included in planning, activities, monitoring, evaluation, learning and reporting, as well as budgeting & training. The following resources can help you in planning a safe approach throughout. 

Our Top Three Recommendations


  • Bond’s resource Understanding Effective Safeguarding Culture (pdf) is a tool to help organisations understand the indicators and behaviours associated with safeguarding culture. Section 2 provides indicators on Safe Programming. 
  • RSH - How to Design and Deliver Safe Programmes (pdf). This how-to note which details what safe programming is, what needs to be in place to support safe programming, the importance of community engagement for safe programming and how to integrate safeguarding throughout the programme cycle. This is a generic version that will be adapted for different contexts and translated in due course. The infographics accompanying this note are available here in colour, black and white, and mobile versions.
  • Keeping Children Safe’s Self Assessment: This online (and downloadable) self-assessment tool specifically designed for those working with children in international settings, enables organisations to get a better understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of their safeguarding implementation. It takes about 30 minutes.
  • RSH Safeguarding Organisation Capacity Self-Assessment: This is an organisation capacity self-assessment tool based on 17 statements, that supports organisations in assessing their safeguarding capacity and helps them develop action plans to strengthen capacity.
  • Bond’s Quick reference: measures to prevent sexual exploitation and abuse (pdf): adapted from the CHS (Core Humanitarian Standards) Alliance’s PSEA Quick Reference Handbook, this is a brief 2 page checklist of measures.
  • Go to Global Principles and Standards for more information on the frameworks that underpin the above audit tools. 

Due Diligence

Due diligence on in-country partners is a requirement for Scottish grant holders, FCDO and other funders as well as being good practice and a part of partnership development. The term due diligence means carrying out checks on and with your current and potential in-country partner(s) to make sure they have the robust policies and procedures in place to safeguard against risk.

Risk assessments and due diligence approaches can be used with current partnerships in order to open dialogue and facilitate conversations around good safeguarding practices. 

Institutional Guidance

Examples of Due Diligence and Compliance Forms/Templates

Further Resource

The former Department for International Development (DFID - now the FCDO)'s Safeguarding Unit released a Sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment (SEAH) Infrastructure Tool (pdf). It is designed for FCDO advisers, programme managers and senior responsible officers working in the infrastructure sector, which has been assessed as a high-risk environment for incidents of sexual exploitation and abuse.

Legislative Context

Safeguarding policies and procedures must be grounded in the legislation and policy framework of the country an organisation is registered or based in. See our list of relevant legislation for Scotland and the UK on our 'UK Context and Beyond page'.

Safeguarding in Context

Read about the background and wider context of safeguarding in international development


Understanding Safeguarding

Scottish Context

UK & Wider Context 

Safeguarding in Practice

Access practical tools, resources and training to help you in your own organisation


Training and Safeguarding Basics

*  Safeguarding Leads/Focal Points

Policies & Procedures

Safer Programming

Survivor-centred Approach

Awareness Raising

Safer Recruitment


Leadership & Culture


Tailored Support & Networks

Find safeguarding experts and connect with others working in the sector

Safeguarding Specialists

The Alliance’s Safeguarding Working Group

Networks & Collaboratives


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