What is Expected of Every Pilgrim and Code of Conduct & Safeguarding


What is expected of Every Pilgrim @WYD 2019

We take seriously our role of preparing and creating a safe environment for our pilgrimage. Our volunteer leaders will receive training and support. Also all pilgrims will re Gardai Safeguarded with support from our Child Safeguarding department. (More details on safeguarding HERE)

Role of the Leader

Over the past number of months the leaders have been putting in enormous amount of work and training in preparation for World Youth Day. Each leader will be briefed about each member in their group and also will meet them in advance of travel. Points below are relevant information that Leaders may need to know:

  • You as Leader will be responsible for each pilgrim in your group. 
  • Become familiar with each member of your group.
  • Be present to your group at all times.
  • Be aware of any issues arising (if serious, contact a member of the Staff WYD Team or Designated Child Safeguarding Officer)
  • Each day be prepared and co-ordinate with other leaders of your group on moving from one event to another.
  • Keep in touch with WYD Staff Team
  • Each morning/evening meet with your group, plan ahead and reflect on what you have been participating in.
  • Be prepared for anything.
  • Remember the Alcohol rules and local protocols

Pilgrimage Protocol

  • No Alcohol for under 18s.
  • Over 18s may drink in moderation! - However it is not recommended due to the local temperature and culture.
  • You will have to respect the house rules of the accommodation assigned. If you are staying with a family, you will respect their home and be an ambassador of good maners and behaviour.

Crowd Control

  • All our pilgrims will be assigned a group leader. This helps wil effective communication and mobility at WYD.
  • Each group will have the appropriate ratio of leaders to young people.
  • During WYD there will be free time. However we request all pilgrims to stay together in groups. There will be regular meetings for leaders in order to streamline communication.

Behaviour—structure and consequences

  • Leaders of groups have the responsibility to deal with initial issues. However, they can ask for advice or support from the WYD Team.
  • If any behavioural issus is prolonged then, it will be dealt with by the designated Safeguarding Officer or WYD Team.
  • Safeguading is paramount for this pilgrimage. Pilgrims who do not follow our policy may be asked to leave the group and return home at their own expense

Health and Safety

  • It is the responsibility of each pilgrim to take care of their own health.
  • We will have limited First Aid support on our pilgrimage.
  • It is essential that each pilgrim brings their own medical supplies if required.


  • You will have to obtain suitable Comprehensive Travel Insurance before traveling to Panama. You may be asked to leave a copy with the Office for Evangelisation and Ecumenism before you travel. Please note the official insurance package provided for participants does not cover the full duration of World Youth Day activities in Panama.
  • You should guard against possible heat exhaustion and sunstroke, as it will be hot and at times wet in January in Panama. You should wear appropriate clothes, including headgear, suncream, stay hydrated and also use insect repellent.

Code of Conduct for Staff, Volunteers & Pilgrims

Staff & Volunteers in the Archdiocese of Dublin are uniquely placed to act as positive role models to children and young people participating in Church activities. Such participation  provides the opportunity to promote the development of self-confidence and enhance the wellbeing of the children & young people with whom we interact. This agreement serves to articulate the expectations of adult behaviour when working with children & young people in the Archdiocese of Dublin. It aims to provide confidence to children & young people, staff,  volunteers, and parents that safeguarding children and young people is of paramount  importance.


WYD Panama Presentation English 

WYD Panama Presentation (Spanish)

To uphold positive safeguarding practices all Staff & Volunteers in contact with       children should:

  • ensure the safety of all children & young people by providing adequate supervision and proper pre planning using safe methods at all times
  • treat all children & young people with dignity & respect
  • treat all children & young people fairly
  • provide an example of good conduct
  • ensure the rights and responsibilities of children & young people are adhered to
  • operate within the Church principles and guidance and any specific procedures
  • be visible to others when working with children
  • develop a culture where children can talk about their contacts with staff and others openly
  • respect each child & young person’s boundaries and help them to develop their own sense of their rights as well as helping them to know what they can do if they feel that there is a problem
  • respect & listen to the opinions of the children & young people
  • be positive & approachable
  • record & report incidents of alleged abuse and poor practice to the designated person
  • maintain confidentiality about sensitive information
  • encourage an anti-discriminatory outlook
  • develop & maintain appropriate working relationships with other staff & volunteers
  • identify & address the needs of disabled children & young people

Staff & volunteers must avoid actions and behaviour that could be         construed as poor practice or potentially abusive. Therefore they should never:

  • hit or otherwise physically assault or physically abuse children
  • develop sexual relationships with children
  • develop relationships with children which could in any way be deemed exploitative or abusive
  • act in ways that may be abusive or may place a child at risk of abuse
  • allow any rough or dangerous play, or inappropriate behaviour
  • allow bullying or permit any abusive peer activities
  • use sanctions that humiliate or harm children & young people
  • condone rule violations
  • spend excessive time alone with children away from others
  • take children to their own home, especially where they will be alone with you
  • speak inappropriately, use bad language, make suggestions or offer advice which is inappropriate, offensive or abusive
  • behave physically in a manner which is inappropriate or sexually provocative
  • have children & young people with whom they are working to stay overnight at their home unsupervised
  • sleep in the same room or bed as a child with whom they are working
  • do things for children of a personal nature that they can do for themselves
  • condone, or participate in, behaviour which is illegal, unsafe or abusive

Staff & Volunteers have the right to:

  • access ongoing training
  • support in reporting suspected abuse
  • fair treatment
  • be protected from abuse by children, young people, parents and other adult members
  • not to be left vulnerable when working with children & young people

Safeguarding Policy Agreement

  • I confirm that I have read and understood the expected Code of Conduct for Staff and Volunteers working with children in the Archdiocese of Dublin. I agree to abide by and adopt these standards in all aspects of my work with the Archdiocese of Dublin.

How to Respond to Child Protection Allegations and Suspicions

The paramount consideration for the Archdiocese of Dublin in all matters to children and       adolescence is their safety and protection from all forms of abuse. The following steps are   taken in relation to all child protection concerns that relate to the personnel in the context of Church activities.

  • All child protection concerns are reported to the HSE and An Garda Siochana as soon as possible
  • Appropriate interim protective measures are taken, pending the outcome of the Garda investigation and HSE assessment. Such measure typically involves the person against whom an allegation of child abuse has been made having no contact with children.
  • Final determination of the person’s future role within the Diocese is informed by the outcome of any Garda Investigation, HSE assessment and internal disciplinary process
  • No person against whom an allegation of child sexual abuse has been substantiated is permitted to work with children on behalf of the Diocese, its parishes or agencies and no priest against whom a substantiated allegation has been made can exercise priestly ministry in the diocese.