Anti Bullying Policy

EVGC Anti Bullying Policy

EVGC is committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our members.
Bullying of any kind is unacceptable. We believe it is important that participants, coaches,
committee members and parents should, at all times, show respect and understanding for the welfare
of others.

Our Anti-Bullying Policy has been designed with our entire membership in mind; we recognise that an
abuser may be from different groups within our organisation and that bullying can take different
forms. If bullying does occur, members should be able to tell and know that incidents will be dealt
with effectively. We are a transparent club. This means that ANYONE who knows that bullying is
happening is expected to tell staff or a Club Welfare Officer.

The aim of the EVGC anti-bullying policy is to clarify for our members, gymnasts and coaches, that
bullying is always unacceptable. We wish to encourage an environment where independence is
celebrated, and individuals can flourish without fear. Every gymnast and coach have the right to be
safe and happy at EVGC and to be protected when he/she is feeling uncomfortable.

Definition of Bullying

Bullying is repeated behaviour which makes children, young people and others feel
uncomfortable or threatened whether this is intended or not.

There are different sorts of bullying, but the main types being:

  • Physical Hitting, kicking, taking or hiding belongings including money.
  • Verbal Name calling, teasing, insulting, writing unkind notes.
  • Emotional - Being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting, spreading rumours, looks.
  • Cyber All areas of internet, such as email and chat room misuse.
  • Mobile threats by text messaging and calls.

It is not always possible to tell if someone is hurt or upset because people react
in different ways and sometimes adults e.g. coaches are unaware of the effect their behaviour
has on others. An overzealous coach or one who resorts to aggressive physical or verbal behaviour;
tormenting, humiliating or ignoring a person may be accused of bullying.

Possible signs of bullying

Gymnasts who are being bullied may show changes in behaviour, such as becoming shy and nervous,
feigning illness or clinging to parents and/or coaches. They may show changes in their
work patterns, may lack concentration or may even start to show poor attendance.

Encouragement to tell someone

It is important we create an atmosphere at EVGC where gymnasts who are being bullied, or others who
know about it feel that they will be listened to and believed, and that action taken will be swift
but sensitive to their concerns. Not telling protects the bully or bullies and gives the message
that they can continue, perhaps bullying others too. Gymnasts at EVGC are encouraged to tell either
their own coach, the Head Coach or a Welfare Officer.

Procedures

In the first instance it is important to make it clear to the victim that revenge is not
appropriate, and to the bully that their behaviour is unacceptable, and has caused distress. Every
effort is made by the Club to resolve the problem through counselling of both parties by the Head
Coach and Welfare Officers. At this stage parents of both parties will be informed by the Clubs
Welfare Team of what has happened, and how it has been dealt with. It is vital that everything
that happens is carefully recorded in a clear factual way. If the bullying behaviour
continues, and counselling has not worked, then sanctions follow. These will be decided between the
Head Coach, and the Welfare Team. Counselling will be maintained for both parties even when
sanctions have been applied.

To EVGC Members

We want you to be happy and enjoy your time at the Club. If someone else is behaving towards you in
a way that is making you feel unhappy, then we would like you to tell either their own coach, the
Head Coach or a Welfare Officer. They will talk to you about it and together with you, decide
what can be done to make you feel more comfortable. Remember if you are being made unhappy by
someone else we would like to help make it better for you and stop behaviour that makes other
people unhappy.

To Parents

If you think your son/daughter, may be being bullied, or he/she tells you they are, please let your
child’s coach, Head Coach or the Welfare Team know straight away. Please reassure them that we will
deal with it sensitively but firmly. If your child tells us he/she is being bullied, or we discover
that he/she is being bullied, our Welfare Team will contact you, and we can discuss together how
the situation can be resolved.

Date Adopted: August 2019