Little Chefs Big Chefs CIC Policies

Summary of our Policies



At LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC, we promote positive good behaviour and aim to act as positive role models. We focus on the praise of positive actions, attitudes and behaviour to gain respect.

We encourage all adults and children treat each other with respect, dignity, equality and fairness and encourage self-discipline and consideration for each other, local surroundings and property.

The staff member running the workshop, or the community pantry is responsible for overseeing the behaviour management of everybody present, both children and adults.

If any child displays inappropriate behaviour, we will ensure that the parent/carer is supported to deal appropriately with the incident. How a particular type of behaviour is handled will depend on the child, their stage of development and the circumstances.

Physical punishment by staff will not be considered acceptable under any circumstances and may result in management action.

All adults, including staff, parents and carers are expected to act as positive role models. Discriminatory or offensive language and behaviour will not be accepted and will be challenged. Bullying is also unacceptable and adults who continue with anti-social or abusive behaviour will be requested to stop such actions. If they persist, the management or member of staff in charge reserves the right to ask them to leave the workshop or pantry.

Any incidents of unacceptable behaviour either by a child or adult will be recorded and signed by member of staff and witnesses.



It is the aim of LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC to make sure that their services are open to everybody. However, some services will incur a charge in order to ensure that they continue. The management will ensure that the services are available to all members of the community and have the right to waive charges if necessary.

The current charges for all workshops will be clearly displayed in the relevant publicity. In the case of the community pantry, the suggested service contributions are clearly displayed.

Any free workshops will be advertised in the relevant publicity.

Refunds of funded workshops are discretionary.



LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC welcomes feedback from the users of our workshops and community pantry to ensure that the needs of the local community are being met.

Compliments: We hope that your experience of our workshops and/or community pantry has been a good one. We welcome feedback about our services and members of staff. If you want to compliment staff, you can let us know. We will ensure your comments are passed on to individual members of staff.

You may wish to feedback or comment on the services you have received. We welcome any suggestions for improvements. We have feedback forms available at all of our workshops and community pantry, or you can speak to a member of staff.

Complaints: If you are unhappy with any of the services you receive through LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC you have the right to complain.

If you have a concern or complaint, you can tell us by telephone, in person, email or in writing. Most concerns or complaints will be sorted quickly by the member of staff involved who will either deal with your issue or pass you onto someone else who is more able to help.

LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC has a complaints procedure, and this will be followed if a complaint has been made. Please follow the below guidelines to ensure your complaint is dealt with smoothly.

Stage 1 – Informal complaint to a member of LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC team at the first point of contact. The member of staff will endeavour to resolve the complaint in a professional manner, but if it cannot be resolved then a formal complaint should be made (in writing if possible) as outlined in Stage 2.

Stage 2 – Formal complaint to the directors, for investigation and response to the complainant. Once we receive your complaint, we will investigate and within ten working days send you a full written reply, or let you know if our reply will take longer, explaining the reason for the delay. If we do not hear from you within ten working days of our final reply, we will close the complaint.



LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC will ensure that all information held on its staff and users will be kept confidential and will only be shared with other agencies as outlined below.

Confidentiality: That staff and users understand the importance of maintaining confidentiality at all times.

Staff and users will be encouraged to maintain an ethos of confidentiality and respect for one another’s privacy. Staff will maintain strict confidentiality at all times and will only share information about families as listed below.

Privacy Notice: LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC will hold personal data about the individuals that access its services and is a ‘data controller’ in respect of the Data Protection Act 1998. They will process the data for the following reasons:

To ensure that LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC services meet local need

To monitor and evaluate the impact of LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC and the services we offer.

To provide anonymised statistical data.

To ensure that users’ strengths & needs are adequately supported through using the services we offer.

During the coronavirus pandemic, we will be assisting the NHS Test and Trace service by keeping a temporary
record of who attends our Community Pantry for 21 days and to provide that data to NHS Test and Trace if needed. (It is not
compulsory for people to provide information but could help contain outbreaks).

Information Sharing: That staff and users understand how and when information may be shared.

Information may be shared between professionals providing services in the area when this will be of benefit to the users and informed consent to do so has been obtained. We will make every effort to ensure that we have explained why we want to share information, with whom and for what purpose when we ask your informed consent to share information. Information may also be shared between staff to ensure adequate support for users.

The following exceptions will apply

If information needs to be shared without consent i.e. in the event of a child protection concern; to access emergency medical treatment; if there is suspicion of criminal activity or a crime has been committed; if a court orders the information has to be shared.

Information will be kept in a secure place. In the case of paper documentation this will be held in lockable storage. Electronic information will be held on password protected computers/servers. Users will have access to the information held about them as per the Data Protection Act. They will not have access to information about any other users of LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC Services. Consent to share information can be withdrawn at any time, but this may limit the support that can be offered.



This will be in line with current Data Protection legislation.

General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) – As of 2018, new regulations come into force which govern how your personal data can be collected, stored and handled.

As a business which operates online, collection of some data is essential to operation of our business. This policy details how your data is handled, stored and deleted.

No data is collected by LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC unless you purchase an item, book a workshop place, ‘sign in’ when you attend a workshop, ‘anonymously ‘sign in’ when you use our community pantry or send us a message through our “Contact Us” facility or email. By taking one of these actions you are consenting to the information you provide being shared with LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC.

All data is retained on a secure server by our web host, which is subject to regular penetration testing to ensure it remains secure.

Data you share including your name, address, email address, telephone number, dietary information and any supplementary information entered by you is retained only as necessary for us to provide the service to you that you have requested.

Data is routinely removed from our systems three months after the event or item you have purchased.

When paying online your card data is classed as sensitive data. To ensure the upmost security we handle all payments “off-site”, that is you are re-directed to a secure hosted payment system provided by Square Up Europe Ltd. LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC receives no confidential information relating to your card and your details are secured by First Data.

You have a right to request your personal data is deleted from our systems at any time. You may do this by emailing LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC.

GDPR requires that you positively confirm that you are willing for your data to be shared with LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC for the purposes of delivering you the services or products you request. By submitting an order, you are providing that consent.


We offer free snack bags for children throughout the year funded by the income from our pantry. These are available for each child who visits the pantry or can be picked up by parents/carers for children at home or at school. We are unable to issue these for children of extended family, friends or neighbours. Please note the contents of the bags may vary. We may have to bring in restrictions at a later date.


LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC is committed to treat every individual equally, regardless of their age, disability, sex, or sexual orientation, gender, religion or belief. We also aim to help build an atmosphere of friendship, respect and consideration for each other

Accessibility: All our workshops, events and pantry are held in venues that are accessible to all individuals.

We are committed to ensuring all individuals are able to attend our activities or visit the pantry so we will reassess our access requirements to meet their needs.

Diversity: We aim to ensure our workshops, events and activities are suited to the interests and meet the needs of a wide variety of individuals.

We aim to be open to new ideas and suggestions that will benefit the greater community.

Inclusion and Respect: Information will be presented in clear, concise language.

We aim to support all children, young people and adults who have additional needs and or disabilities are catered for within any planned events or workshops.

Every user will be equally welcome to attend our open workshops, events, activities and general meetings unless we have evidential concern that they may pose a risk to others. The exception to this is specific workshops, e.g. children’s, special needs, men only, women only etc. where the project outcomes are targeted at these groups.

Sexist, racist, homophobic, trans-phobic or otherwise offensive and inflammatory remarks and behaviour will not be accepted or tolerated. These constitute harassment and have no place within any Little Chefs Big Chefs services. Therefore, we aim to create an environment of mutual respect and tolerance.

Dealing with Discrimination and Harassment: If any individual feels they have been discriminated against by the staff or volunteers at Little Chefs Big Chefs or harassed at a workshop, event or activity, they should raise this with the management.

The management will investigate the complaint, listening to all members involved. (If the complaint is against a management member, that member will not be part of conducting the investigation).

If the complaint is against a particular individual, this person will have the opportunity to express their point of view, accompanied by a representative. The person making the complaint will also have this opportunity.

If the complaint is against Little Chefs Big Chefs as a whole, the management must work to ensure that such discrimination is not repeated in the future and must inform the members of how they propose to do this.

Any decision to exclude a person from the organisation due to discriminatory or harassing behaviour will be made with reference to our constitution. Little Chefs Big Chefs will support people who feel they have been harassed or discriminated against and will not victimise or treat them less well because they have raised this.



LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC will take all reasonable steps to create a safe working environment and ensure safe working practices. Parents/carers are responsible for their children at all times when attending our workshops and visiting the community pantry unless the workshops specifically are for lone children. Children will then be cared for by suitable staff. Users and staff will be kept safe through the following methods:

Prevent accidents and cases of work-related ill health by managing the health and safety risks within the venues.

Provide clear instructions, information, and adequate training, to ensure participants and any employees/volunteers are competent to take part in the session/do their work.

Implement emergency procedures – evacuation in case of fire or other significant incident.

Maintain safe and healthy working conditions, provide and maintain equipment, and ensure safe storage/use of substances.

Engage and consult with employees/volunteers on day-to-day health and safety conditions.



LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC believes that parents/carers have the right to choose whether photographs are taken of their child/ren and themselves when they are attending any of the workshops and this option is given. We aim to safeguard all children and adults who attend the cafe and will ensure that no photographs are taken or used at a later date without the consent of the parent/carer.

All parents/carers/individuals will be asked to sign a photography permission statement which will state the purpose of the photographs and their storage and use. Photographs taken with parental/individual’s permission may be used to publicise our work and published in a variety of ways including flyers/posters, our website, social media pages or shared with our funders etc. We also verbally explain this to allow for any questions. Parents/carers/individuals have the right to withdraw that permission at any time.

Parents will be asked not to take photographs of other children without the consent of the child’s parent/carer.

Official photographers who attend our workshops or community pantry representing our funders, the media or other organisation will be required to gain permission from the responsible adult before taking a photograph.

If it is known in advance that an official photographer will be present at a workshop, parents/carers/individuals will be notified.


All organisations that work with children share a responsibility for the safeguarding of children and young people.

Little Chefs Big Chefs CIC works with children, young people, families and vulnerable adults as part of its cooking and food education activities. These groups may also use our community pantry. During these activities and community pantry opening times, we may face situations where abuse and/or neglect may be noticed and/or disclosed.

Our policy has been drawn up on the basis of legislation, policy and guidance that seeks to protect children, young people and vulnerable adults in the United Kingdom as guided by the Children’s Act 2004, the UN Rights of the Child 1990, the Care Act 2014, the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board (Durham Safeguarding Children’s Board) and County Durham Safeguarding Adults Board.

Staff have an obligation to take action as per our safeguarding procedures if there are signs that a child under the age of 18 years, an unborn baby or vulnerable adult shows signs of abuse (physical, emotional, neglect, sexual and/or sexual exploitation).

We Believe That:

  • children, young people and vulnerable adults should never experience abuse and/or neglect of any kind
  • we have a responsibility to promote the welfare of all children, young people and vulnerable adults to keep them safe and to practise in a way that protects them

 We Recognise That:

  • the welfare of the child and young person is paramount, as is that of the vulnerable adult
  • all children, young people and vulnerable adults regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation have a right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse
  • some children, young people and vulnerable adults are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues
  • working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers, vulnerable adults and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare

We Will Seek to Keep Children, Young People and Vulnerable Adults Safe By:

  • valuing, listening to and respecting them
  • appointing a nominated safeguarding lead
  • developing child, young people and vulnerable adult protection and safeguarding policies and procedures which reflect best practice
  • using our safeguarding procedures to share concerns and relevant information with agencies who need to know, and involving children, young people, vulnerable adults, parents/carers and families appropriately
  • recruiting staff and volunteers safely, ensuring all necessary checks are made
  • providing effective management for staff and volunteers through supervision, support, training and quality assurance measures
  • implementing a code of conduct for staff and volunteers
  • using our procedures to manage any allegations against staff and volunteers appropriately
  • ensuring that we have effective complaints and whistleblowing measures in place
  • ensuring that we provide a safe physical environment for our children, young people, vulnerable adults, staff and volunteers, by applying health and safety measures in accordance with the law and regulatory guidance
  • recording and storing information professionally and securely

Definitions of Abuse

Abuse can take many forms including physical, emotional, neglect, sexual and/or sexual exploitation.

Safe Recruitment

Little Chefs Big Chefs CIC has a commitment to safeguarding and protecting children, young people and vulnerable adults therefore application forms to assess the candidate’s suitability for the role will be used as well as face to face interviews.

Any criminal convictions, cautions, other legal restrictions or pending cases that might affect their suitability to work with children, young people or vulnerable adults will be queried. Under no circumstances will any person be allowed to work or volunteer with Little Chefs Big Chefs CIC if they are deemed to pose a risk to children, young people or vulnerable adults.

DBS checks will be made, and references checked. Staff and volunteers who work directly with children will be required to attend child protection training and update this as necessary.

If working in partnership with another organisation (with the exception of schools), DBS certification will need to be provided for all staff/volunteers who will be working alongside and/or present.

We will also keep a record of every person who has supported/been involved with projects and/or workshops.



LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC will promote good practices to minimise any potential spread of infection amongst users and staff.

We politely ask parents/carers/individuals to refrain from using our services if unwell and/or infectious.

Should a child, young person or adult appear to be unwell, a senior staff member will have to consider the needs of other users and may request the parent/carer/individual to care for their child/themselves at home.

There will always be a qualified First Aider present in our workshops and community pantry.



LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC are committed to promoting a healthy lifestyle and environment for all children young people and adults and will support parents/carers and individuals who wish to give up smoking, alcohol or drugs by signposting them to the appropriate services.

LITTLE CHEFS BIG CHEFS CIC outreach workshops and community pantry are no smoking environments and signs are displayed to this effect. Any adults (including staff) who wish to smoke must leave the premises, Parents who leave the premises in order to smoke must ensure that their child/ren are safe and secure in the charge of another adult and understand that staff cannot be responsible for the child/ren’s care at this time. Anybody who attempts to smoke in the outreach venue will be asked to leave the premises as it is illegal to smoke in an enclosed public area.

The consumption of alcohol/illegal drugs is not permitted on outreach venues and community pantry. Anyone found consuming alcohol/taking illegal drugs will be asked to leave the workshops or pantry.

Any parent/carer who appears to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs will be supported in caring for their child. However, if it is considered that the child/ren are at risk then safeguarding procedures will be followed and children’s social care will be contacted. If a parent/carer chooses to drive whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs, staff will advise them that it is unwise to do so and that the Police will be contacted to ensure the safety of any children and other members of the public.

If any illegal drugs and/or drug taking equipment are found in outreach venues or community pantry venue, the area will be made safe and the police will be contacted.