Student Community Action is committed to protecting the children and vulnerable people we work with from harm. As such we aim to do everything in our power to ensure that the staff and volunteers we recruit are suitable to work with vulnerable people.

SCA is committed to opportunities for all volunteers regardless of age, gender, physical disability, ethnic origin, religion, marital status, economic status, sexual orientation or unrelated criminal conviction, making exception only where it can be objectively justified.

DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service)

Every volunteer and staff member wishing to work on an SCA project is obliged to undertake the relevant DBS check for that role.

Volunteers wishing to work with children or vulnerable adults on one of our projects will need to apply for an Enhanced DBS and may be eligible for the barred lists to be checked. All roles will be checked against the DBS Eligibility Tool and they will need to show the disclosure to the Volunteers and Projects (V&P) Officer to be checked and disclosure number and date recorded.

Volunteers working with a child or vulnerable adult on a one-to-one basis should only start working with the child once the DBS has been returned.

For volunteers who have been in the UK for less than 6 months, a DBS is required if they have been resident in the UK for more than three months. In addition, for any volunteers who have been in the UK for less than 6 months the below is required:

1) A good written reference for the volunteer from someone who has known them at least 2 years
2) A signed statement that they have NO criminal convictions, reprimands or warning
3) A criminal record check or ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ from all countries that they have resided in. If there is a cost to obtaining these certificates the volunteer should inform SCA of the total anticipated cost prior to payment. If the cost is deemed reasonable SCA will reimburse the total cost

DBS – Portability

SCA will encourage all volunteers to sign up to the free update service:-

If an applicant has a DBS which is less than 6 months old then we will still do a new DBS form for SCA, but the applicant will be allowed to start volunteering immediately if the client / project leader is informed and agrees to this arrangement.

Character References

All volunteers are required to supply SCA with the name and address of two people who are in a position to give a character reference. They must have known the applicant for at least

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one year and cannot be a member of the applicant’s family or peer group. The volunteer will not allow be allowed to start volunteering until at least one suitable reference has been received.


All volunteers working on SCA projects are required to be interviewed by an SCA staff member.

External Projects

All volunteers that have completed the SCA referral form and are then referred to external organisations will be subject to a DBS check as per SCA guidelines.

SCA may on occasion act as a ‘DBS Umbrella Body’ for the external organisation we work for. SCA again takes no responsibility for the recruitment decision. The organisation will be provided with the issued statement and any additional information received, to enable them to make their own recruitment decision.

Reviewed and ratified by Trustees 14 March 2023

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