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Sara Swann MBE has been a leading expert in the field of child sexual exploitation for nearly 20 years. She has now worked with over 60 local safeguarding boards in England and Wales either in training multi-agency groups or through consultancy for services, protocols, or generally progressing the issues around sexual exploitation. She is an enthusiastic, motivating and informed trainer and can provide many endorsements for her work. She is widely published and has spoken at many National and International conferences and events. Her professional career has encompassed teaching and youth work but mainly social work spanning issues from child protection to youth offending. In 1994, with Barnardo’s she set up the first multi agency service in the UK for girls and young women who were at risk of or involved in what was commonly referred to as “prostitution”.
As National Co-ordinator for Barnardo’s from 1998, she co-ordinated new services for sexually exploited young people in Middlesbrough, Liverpool, Wolverhampton, Birmingham, Bristol, Southampton and London. In Bradford her project piloted Barnardo’s first Missing young persons scheme, having recognised strong links with CSE and missing, which has since been replicated in many other regions in the UK. Her project created and piloted the Education Resource Pack ‘Things we don’t Talk About’ for direct work with girls and young women.
Sara co authored the report “Whose daughter Next?” and worked closely to produce the video of the same name. She established the ‘boyfriend model’ and was directly involved in consultation with government officials in the formulation of the initial Guidance, published in 2000. She was then commissioned by the Government to review the implementation of this Guidance and reported on the progress of all 146 ACPCs in England published in 2003.
She was a member of the reference group at the Home Office, which reviewed the sex offences legislation, finalised in the Sexual Offences Act 2003, implemented in May 2004. She has most recently been a member of the reference group for the new guidance, ‘Safeguarding children from sexual exploitation’ which was published in June 2009. In December 2000 she was invested with an MBE in recognition for her services to child welfare.