Last week the Operations Team at Charity Challenge all ventured down to the Royal Geographic Society for the launch event of the revised standard BS8848, the British Standard for organising and managing adventurous activities outside the UK.
Originally launched in 2007 the standard was the first standard of its kind in the UK to help adventure activity providers to run safer adventurous trips outside of the UK. The revised standard, launched yesterday, has now stripped away much of the complexity of the original standard to create a more streamlined and useable set of guidelines. It was very pleasing to hear that many of the comments made regarding the original standard had been taken on-board and Charity Challenge are fully supportive of the new standard.
In 2013 Charity Challenge launched its own safety management system called Challenge Safe. We are extremely proud of this comprehensive in-house safety management system and we have already introduced many changes to the way we operate on the ground based on these far reaching safety guidelines and minimum standards. The revised BS8848 provides a set of guidelines that demonstrate best practice. However it is not within the remit of this standard to offer guidance as to how to conform to these guidelines. What Challenge Safe offers is a system for implementing these guidelines so that there is a real change in safety standards. The operations team will be taking a close look at the revised BS8848 and going through our challenges trip by trip to look into how compliance with this new standard will work alongside Challenge Safe to make our challenges even safer. BS8848 is designed to represent the minimum standard required for managing risk in adventurous travel overseas. From Charity Challenge’s point of view we want to make sure that we are not only adhering to these minimum standards but that, through Challenge Safe, we continue to lead the way in being the foremost challenge company when it comes to our participants’ safety.
The real challenge lies in making sure that documents such as BS8848 and Challenge Safe are being adhered to on the ground. To this end both Andy and Carmel from the Operations Team will be delivering training in Tanzania and Peru over the coming months aimed at educating our ground teams on the use of these safety documents.