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DBS (previously CRB) Disclosures for CHaOS volunteers

As CHaOS events involve working with children, we require that our volunteers apply for Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) disclosures to participate in events at schools. This will let CHaOS know if you have a UK Criminal Record that affects working with children, and is standard practice in the UK for most activities involving close contact with children. Applying for a disclosure involves bringing along some identification, and filling in some paperwork (which usually takes less than 15 minutes, depending on how much of the form applies to you).

Will I need a DBS disclosure?

  • For one day events, such as Crash, Bang, Squelch!, volunteers do not need a DBS disclosure.
  • For Summer Roadshow events, or any events in schools, volunteers must be covered by current enhanced DBS checks, as follows:
    • If you have an enhanced DBS disclosure from an organisation other than CHaOS dated within the last 2 years then you don't need to apply for another one, just show us the one you've got.
    • Otherwise, we will ask you to apply for a DBS disclosure through CHaOS. This is free of charge, and just involves filling in some forms and showing some proof of identity (see below for more details)
    • An enhanced DBS disclosure from CHaOS will remain valid for 3.5 years from the date it is received; if you remain involved in CHaOS events for longer than this we will ask you to apply for a new one.


More details about the procedure for applying

Depending on the time of year you apply, we should be able to meet you in person and help you to fill the form in. The form is fairly simple to fill in- the slightly more complicated part comes from checking ID.

The full list of possible documents is here, but in general, if you have one of the documents in Group 1/Group 2a, then we only need to see three documents in total (one of which must have your Cambridge address on it).

Three of these documents are best for filling out the forms:

  • At least one of: Passport, UK or EU driving licence, UK Birth (or adoption) Certificate, EU photo ID (or one of the other documents in Group 1/2a, see the full list here).
  • At least one document with your Cambridge address on it (college bill including rent charge/utility bill/bank statement.. some of these need to be less than 3, or less than 12, months old, check the starred items on the full list here, and unfortunately we aren't allowed to accept account statements printed off internet banking etc. services, statements have to have come through the post)
  • And if necessary one more to make a total of 3 documents (such as a statement from another bank or utility company, a visa/work permit for the UK... see the full list here).


New for 2011: Changes to the form mean that if you have a UK driving licence/UK passport/national insurance number (UK students and some post docs will have these, if you don't know what an NI number is, don't worry about it) in most cases you need to provide the numbers for these, even if you're not using these documents as ID. Provided you have enough documents to fulfil the other criteria we don't necessarily need to see the original documents. Email contact@chaosscience.org.uk if you have any questions. If in doubt please just bring as many ID documents as you can find in Cambridge and we'll figure it out!

Even more information

  • This link here from the Home Office is a good source of information about the latest rules on DBS checks.
  • If you're filling out a DBS check form on your own and want to have a look at an example, check out our sample form for the older style application form. The new form is simpler, but most of the fields are the same!

NB: Having a criminal record for minor offenses doesn't mean you're automatically excluded from a CHaOS event - tell us before sending the form off and we can discuss it with you. Our policy on this, and the other measures we take to protect children at CHaOS events, is here.