We are committed to creating and maintaining a safe and positive environment for everyone to participate in boccia, and continuously update our policies and procedures to achieve this.

Over the past 18 months we have been working hard to strengthen our safeguarding case management procedures. This has included investing in a new online case management system and safeguarding reporting form developed by Globocol, reviewing our case management threshold document and enrolling on LimeCulture’s Safeguarding Case Management Programme to provide us with additional support.

As part of this work, four new independent panel members have been appointed to our Safeguarding Case Management Group, all of whom are from a range of backgrounds, bringing a wealth of knowledge and experience to the group. They will sit on the Case Management Group, working alongside George Bollands (BE Lead Safeguarding Officer), to offer advice and guidance in relation to the management of safeguarding concerns and cases we receive. 

We are delighted to announce that the four new independent panel members on our case management group are Brendan Tonks, Kath Bennett, David Ellis and Lavern Wilson. Below is a short bio about each of them.

Brendon Tonks

Brendan is passionate about safeguarding in sport. Whilst practicing child protection social work, Brendan was an avid sports person. More recently he was able to utilise his safeguarding and risk analysis skills as a national governing body lead safeguarding officer, before joining the NSPCC Child Protection in Sport team the role of senior consultant. Brendan was recently appointed as CEO at Cerebral Palsy Sport and is keen to support England Boccia with Safeguarding.

Brendan is a parent of a daughter with Cerebral Palsy, so inclusive sports are incredibly important to him.

Lavern Wilson

Lavern is a retired Assistant Principal and was responsible for whole school Safeguarding with many years’ experience, Pastoral and Mental Health Lead. She is now a part time Independent Children Safeguarding Trainer, advisor and Consultant. She has a real passion for Safeguarding and a firm believer that every child has the right to feel safe. Lavern is excited and feel it is a privileged to be part of this Safeguarding Case Management group.

In her spare time, Lavern loves the sunshine and enjoys going on holidays with her husband. She has a gorgeous brown border collie named Charlie, as well as a wonderful 6-year-old grandson who she now has the pleasure of being able to take him to school and pick him up and spending as much time with him as possible.

David Ellis

David has worked in the voluntary sector for over 17 years, initially in Event Operations for the British Red Cross, this role included on-call Adult and Child safeguarding officer responsibilities, and training of first aid and ambulance crew personnel in both. He is currently in a similar role with St. John Ambulance. He is also a volunteer with Scouts in County Durham, and acts as an independent safeguarding advisor for a regional private ambulance company.

In his spare time, he volunteers for Stockport Boccia Club and Boccia England as an official, and is a Ramp Operator for an England BC3 athlete. He lives in Manchester with his partner, Raf, and is owned by three inquisitive Mogs.

Kath Bennett

Kath is currently the Safeguarding Case Manager at the Rugby Football Union responsible for all reactive safeguarding matters across rugby union in England. This involves working closely with the RFU’s own case management group, presenting cases and providing safeguarding recommendations. Kath has recently graduated from Worcester University with a Post Graduate Certificate in Leading Culture Change in Safeguarding and is a Trustee with Brave Mind, a rugby related mental health charity. 


Our newly formed Safeguarding Case Management Group will meet in person for the first time in February. Following this, the group will then meet as and when safeguarding concerns are received to discuss and decide on the route of action each case should take.

For more information about our safeguarding policies and procedures or to discuss a safeguarding enquiry, please contact our Lead Safeguarding Officer, George Bollands, by emailing [email protected] or calling 07809336321.


Report a safeguarding concern