Parents play a pivotal role in encouraging and supporting their child’s participation, success and fun when playing basketball. It's your right as a parent (or carer) to be able to check how well a basketball club is run, for the sake of your child's safety and your peace of mind.
If you're worried that your child or another child is being abused or put at risk during basketball, it's crucial that you talk to someone. The idea of speaking out about abuse or poor practice in a club setting can be daunting as you will most likely feel worried about the impact on you and/or the child but it is imperative that you take action as you will be safeguarding your child, other children and even children who arrive in the future.
To report a concern, you can can visit the report a concern page and find out more information there. We also have a page that has all our safeguarding policies which can be found here. here is also a page specifically designed for children to help them identify if they need to speak with someone, and who that should be, available here.
We do have a FAQs page here that may answer your questions or give you a better understanding. If there are quesitons that aren't answered through the FAQs please let us know so we can add and adapt them to ensure we cover all bases.
If you can’t find the information you’re looking for, or your questions are unanswered, you can contact our team at HQ with any concerns you have and we will do our best answer them, or get in touch with the people who can.
If you have an urgent query and you believe there is a risk to someone’s safety you can report a concern directly to the NSPCC here.
How can I support my child in basketball?
As a parent you have an important role in your child's basketball life. Be it from, giving lifts, washing kit and giving words of encouragement court side. You can also support their involvement within basketball through fundraising, volunteering at their club, supporting the clubs social media platforms/website or even assisting with funding applications. These are all small things that can make a big difference to your child's involvement and also the club your child is at.
There are also smaller things you can do whilst your child is playing basketball to make a big difference on their enjoyment:
More information on being positive around your child, please refer to our Basketball England's Code of Ethics & Conduct.
Other parents seem to be negative towards their child, is there anything I can do?
Parental behaviour within basketball for most of the time, is very positive and supportive. Sometimes though, parents can be negative without even knowing. A lot of problems arise when parents:
If you see this behaviour, it should be reported to the Club Welfare Officer so they can look at taking action or report it to Basketball England. You can also direct them to Basketball England's Code of Ethics & Conduct as this outlines the conduct that all spectators and parents must following at all Basketball England affiliated events. You should encourage your club to display this before, during and after club games & training sessions.
My child looks upset after basketball practice and they seem reluctant to talk, what should I do?
Your child may have experience something difficult in their day and it can be difficult to bring it up and talk openly with them about it. Childline highlighted in a review of all calls made to themselves in 2016/17 that children and young people often feel they aren’t being heard and understood by the adults in their lives. This means they can struggle to speak out about problems. In 32,990 counselling sessions this year, the young person said calling Childline was the first time they had been able to talk about their concern.
There are lots of different ways to make it easier upon yourself and also your child to talk openly about any concerns they may have. Yourself or your child may think why should we talk. It is all about creating a positive environment with good advice and knowledge to make them aware that there is always someone to talk too.
To start the conversation you should look at where you start it, create a neutral environment that is suitable, that is away from peers/brothers and sisters as they may influence the content or how much is disclosed to you. It is all about finding the right timing also, it may be something you bring up through watching TV as it relates to the topic that needs to be discussed but you could also use it in a scenario such as 'my friend is going through this situation, what do you think about...' as this will show that you value your child's opinion whilst finding out what their knowledge is around the subject matter.
It's never to have a serious conversation with a child but the NSPCC provide expert advice and examples that will make the conversation go smoother and be less forceful.
I think my child is being bullied, how do I deal with this?
If you think your child is being bullied within basketball, talk with your Club Welfare Officer on how to deal with this and if necessary report it to Basketball England but first of all, don't panic.
As a parent your role is to be calming, reassuring and being there to listen. You need to listen to them to establish all the facts before acting and ensure that your child doesn't retaliate to any bullying. Assure your child that it is not their fault that they are being bullied and reassure them that you are there to support them.
You should ask what your child wants to happen next by identifying the choices open to them and the potential steps to take. Young people want to take ownership of their mental health and learn positive ways to cope with challenges. This regularly comes up in Childline’s peer support message boards and counselling sessions. Childline have found that being creative, taking up a hobby, finding peer support networks, or deep breathing and meditation works best for for them. Young people value being able to discuss options and make their own decisions about what works best for them.
I am worried about my child online and unsure if they are safe.
Being online is massive part of society today and influences everyone and anyone so it can be difficult to know/manage what your child is looking at online. One way to know that they are safe online is to have open and regular talks about what they are doing online, it may be worth having a family discussion to set boundaries and set out what is appropriate and what is not appropriate.
Exploring sites together that your child uses and being positive about them but being open about any concerns that you see. If anything makes them feel uncomfortable, discuss it and talk about why it makes them feel uncomfortable, reassure them and inform them that you are there to talk to them and even show them how to report sites/content and give them the initiative/encouragement to report things themselves. If you are unsure what sites/apps your child is using, Net Aware (an organisation set up by NSPCC and O2) has create a guide to the most popular apps and online sites that children are most likely to use.
The NSPCC provide more advice on talking to your child and keeping them safe online and also the UK Safer Internet Centre provide support for young people, parents and teachers/professionals. They highlight the issues with young people using the internet but also provide advice on how to ensure they are safe and how you can assist.
The NSPCC has worked with the Guardian to develop a children's services section on their website which covers different topics also.
Where I can find some more information?
The CPSU (Child Protection in Sport Unit) have a section on their website full of videos from professionals and children about the impact parents can have on their success in sport. For these videos and more information please click here.