SandCastles Rules for Safety

At SandCastles, we believe the healing power of peer support is only possible in an environment that is safe in all ways: physical, emotional, and otherwise. To create a safe and comfortable atmosphere at program, we have created our SandCastles Rules for Safety. These rules are reviewed at the beginning of every program, and all participants, volunteers, and staff are expected to follow them.

  1. “Stop and I Mean It!”
    • If at any point a person (child, teen, or adult) feels a situation is not safe or comfortable, we use the language “stop and I mean it.”
  2. Confidentiality
    • What happens at SandCastles stays at SandCastles…UNLESS someone is being harmed or could potentially be harmed. Then we must break confidentiality to keep everyone safe.
  3. Respect
    • We respect each other, including each other’s feelings, and we respect the space we are in.
  4. “I Pass”
    • Participation is fully optional. A person can always choose to pass.
  5. “Keep Your Hands on Your Own Body”
    • Hands & feet to ourselves, including kind touches like hugs; if the other person does not want to be hugged, we respect their space.
  6. “If It’s Wet and Not Yours, Don’t Touch It”
    • A hygiene rule: anything wet and not yours, leave alone (a tissue, a mess, etc.) and inform an adult.
  7. Adult Rule
    • Children and teens must always be accompanied by an adult.
  8. Name Tag Rule
    • All participants, volunteers, and staff wear name tags at all times.
  9. Be Here Now Rule
    • Our time together is short and precious. Electronic devices and other distractions should be tucked away to allow us to be present for one another.

Because the SandCastles rules are outlined as expectations at every program, we believe that children “break rules” with intention to seek the support they need. For example, upon hearing the Confidentiality Rule and knowing that we will break confidentiality in cases of harm, a child who shares about abuse can trust that our volunteers and staff will take action to ensure the child is safe.

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