The Children’s Safety Survey gives you an opportunity to hear directly from children about how safe they feel in your organisation by measuring the following:

  • perceptions of the culture and climate of safety within the organisation
  • confidence in adults and confidence in your organisation to respond to their safety concerns
  • things that help or hinder them from seeking help.

The Children’s Safety Survey measures children and young people’s perceptions of safety. It is an empirically validated and reliable survey tool that measures their confidence in adults and organisations and the extent to which they believe that their interpersonal safety needs are being met.

During the survey period, you will have access to real-time results. At the end of the survey period, you will receive a report to help you make decisions about how to improve the safety climate of your organisation.

Scenarios as a tool

In addition to asking general questions about how safe children and young people feel, the survey also invites them to respond to scenarios describing situations where a child or young person may feel uncomfortable or unsafe. The scenarios describe interactions that might cause children some discomfort or ‘set off alarm bells’ or are ambiguous about whether a boundary has been crossed. They are set in education, child welfare/community services, sporting and religious settings – organisations choose two scenarios that suit their context.

Other features:

  • scenarios include behaviours that are not explicit or clearly identifiable, building on our research that children and young people hesitate to report their concerns when they don’t have ‘concrete evidence’ or are not good at identifying grooming or other potentially harmful behavior. Read Our Safety Counts
  • organisations have the option to change the gender of the ‘potential victim’ (i.e., the young person) without changing the nature of the scenario
  • only males are represented as engaging in the potentially concerning behaviour, reflecting the fact that the majority of child sexual abuse in institutions is perpetrated by men.

Below is a sample of two hypothetical scenarios that children respond to in the survey.

Education setting

Adult scenario

Peer-to-peer scenario

Practicing the play (teacher-young person)

A student at school is working with a teacher on the school play who makes the student feel uncomfortable.

Swim squad (young person-young person)

A young person is paired up with a good swimmer on the swim team who does things that make the young person feel uncomfortable.

Sport setting

Adult scenario

Peer-to-peer scenario

Critical coach (coach-young person)

A young person is concerned about physical contact and remarks about the young person’s body from the coach.

Teasing trainer (young person-young person)

A young person is concerned about attention and touching from another young person who is a slightly older teammate.

These scenarios are abridged versions – click here to see the full descriptions and links to demonstration versions of the survey.

More information

Read more information about the Children’s Safety Survey, our prospectus and survey results:

Children’s Safety Survey prospectus

Children’s Safety Survey results 2018-19

Children’s Safety Survey results 2018-20

Children’s Safety Survey results 2021

Contact us if you would like to help develop new scenarios. Or click here to register your interest in the survey and we will get back to you.

Kids Helpline

1800 55 1800

This portal is aimed at people working in youth-serving organizations to help them better prevent and respond to harm to children.

If you would like to talk to a trained professional about what you’ve seen on the Portal, or need help, please call Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800 or Lifeline on 13 11 14.


If you believe a child or young person is in immediate danger, call Police on 000.

Emergency and safety

Further information

For further information on crisis responses and reporting child abuse and neglect, see: Australian Institue of Family Studies website.

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