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In 2017, the Contextual Safeguarding programme (CSP) began partnering with local authorities to begin testing the Contextual Safeguarding (CS) framework in practice. This project was the first systematic attempt at evaluating the extent of the programme’s reach and impact. The Reach and Impact (R&I) workstream aimed to evidence the value that the CSP adds in terms of influencing policy and practice in response to extra-familial harm (EFH). Key achievements include:

  • The CSP has significantly grown in its reach. By January 2022, 1 in 6 councils (55 in total) were represented via the Local Authority Interest Network (LAIN) which is a group of local authorities across England and Wales coordinating the integration of contextual approaches into their systems and practice.
  • Documentary review of 135 local children’s safeguarding partnerships in England, revealed that77%(104)make reference to CS. Of these, 31% (32) have identified CS as a strategic priority and 43% (45) are implementing the CS framework into systems and practice.
  • To understand how the CSP has influenced local systems and practice, 32 case studies were collected from 18 sites.In terms of changes made, they included: CS steering groups; development of adolescent safeguarding strategies; new CS teams or re-organisation of existing teams working with young people at risk or experiencing exploitation; new multi-agency practice forums to address EFH; CS training; introduction of CS champions; and development of bespoke CS resources.


To view more case studies from non test sites, please check our resource page

To view more case studies from test sites, please view our Scale Up Library Catalogue 

Funder: Porticus and the National Lottery