Sheffield Child Exploitation Service: The Amber Project
The Sheffield Child Exploitation Service is called the Amber Project, a co-located, multi-agency partnership involving:
- Children, Young People & Families Service – Social Workers and Intervention Workers.
- South Yorkshire Police – Child Sexual Exploitation Team and Missing Persons Officers.
- Sheffield Futures – Specialist Youth Workers, Management and Administration.
Child exploitation is about children who are being used for someone else’s advantage, gratification or profit which results in harm of the child. This incorporates both sexual and criminal exploitation. The commonality is that these activities involve manipulation, misuse, abuse, victimization and ill-treatment. All of which are detrimental to the child’s physical and mental health and well-being, their education, and their social-emotional development.
The Child Exploitation Screening Tool (see link above):
This tool does not replace existing multi-agency safeguarding arrangements that are in place in Sheffield. If you have safeguarding and child protection concerns about a child’s welfare then you should contact the Sheffield Safeguarding Hub to discuss.
Purpose of this screening tool
This is a screening tool that you can use to help you decide whether a child or young person may be at risk of child exploitation (CE). It is designed to be used by all professionals working with children and parents or carers. A child is defined as a person who is under 18 years of age.
This tool is intended to assist in your decision making; helping you make an initial judgement regarding the risk of child exploitation; it is neither a specialist assessment or referral form. The tool aims to help practitioners focus on the specific child exploitation (CE) evidence, indicators, existing safety and vulnerabilities, and determine whether further investigations are needed by Children’s Social Care or suitable for referral to another prevention and early intervention service.
When you are considering making a referral to the Sheffield Safeguarding Hub or sharing your concerns with the child’s allocated social worker, this screening tool should form the basis of those discussions and your professional analysis.
Practitioners need to exercise their own professional judgement when completing this tool because factors such as the child’s age, any additional vulnerabilities, their history etc. may mean that they are more vulnerable to CE. Professional judgement also includes capturing concerns about which you have evidence as well as concerns based ‘gut feeling’. It is important that you differentiate between the two and provide explanation and rationale. It is important to include the child’s strengths and existing safety so that this can be considered as part of the child’s ongoing safety
Your observations of behaviours and any significant changes will be important as children will often deny or be unaware that they are being exploited.
Child Exploitation Training
Sheffield Futures have produced a training pathway for parents, carers, practitioners from all sectors, faith groups and workers in the night-time economy. They also offer Free Introduction to Child Sexual Exploitation training to any practitioner working in Sheffield.
E-learning For All Staff
Guidance and Fact Sheets
Sheffield Children Safeguarding Partnership (SCSP) Policy and Protocols:
A3 Posters that you can print and display in offices;