Although this issue has always been a basic part of its daily work, Athletic Club has taken a step forward in terms of child protection inside its own institution with the creation of the ATERPE (‘refuge’ in Basque) project. It is a policy that unites all the work done by the club in this field and it is known and respected by all its workers.
In addition, the club’s Child Protection Officer is laying the foundations for systematic work that will culminate in a comprehensive child protection policy, including elements of prevention, training and specific procedures, the sole purpose of which is the well-being of all the children within the organisation.
This role is ground breaking within football and sports on a national level. No other club in LaLiga and very few internationally have one. It is a clear message of institutional responsibility towards the children we work with in all of the organisation’s projects. Not only for the children in the academy football teams, but also in the Foundation, External Project and partner clubs. This innovative measure could lead the way towards comprehensive child protection in the world of sport.
All the children in our junior categories and those who take part in any activity organised by our institution must have a safe/protected space for doing sports. This means there should be adults present who are aware, trained and responsible for the well-being of the athlete.
For Athletic Club, the well-being of all the children in its junior categories is a key priority.
Our commitment to this issue is clear and is reflected in the creation of the ATERPE child protection policy.
Therefore, the responsibility for creating safe spaces rests with everyone at the club. The ATERPE child protection policy “obliges, must be known by and be respected” by everyone at the club: the Board of Directors, employees, volunteers, trainees, etc.