1. Introduction

Our aim is to provide a high-quality empathetic service and to use any funds given to us in the appropriate way. If you see or experience any behaviour that does not meet our high standards, please let us know so we have an opportunity to make it right. If you had a positive experience, we also welcome your feedback. You may want to tell us about our people, the work we do or the way we raise or spend money. This document tells you how you can make a complaint or provide feedback.

We use all feedback anonymously to help us learn and improve our services.

2. Principles of the Feedback and Complaints Policy

All feedback and complaints are taken seriously, and we will respond to all complaints within a set time scale.

To ensure that our feedback and complaints processes are accessible, interpreters can be provided.

We are committed to maintaining the confidentiality of your personal and sensitive information, in line with our data protection responsibilities. Only those who are involved with responding to or acting on your complaint, concern or feedback will be made aware of it. However, there may be circumstances where we are unable to deal with the complaint in confidence; for example, if the complaint relates to a matter which may need to be referred to the police, another agency or authority.

If a concern is raised by, or about, a child or young person under 18 or an adult at risk, we will take all necessary measures to ensure the safety of the individual, in line with our safeguarding policies.

If the complainant is not happy with the result of the response to the complaint they will have the right to appeal.

3. Sharing your Views

There are two ways to tell us what you think—either by providing your feedback (positive or negative) or making a complaint, if you feel that giving feedback alone is not enough.

3.1 Providing feedback 3.1.2 Service Users

We will ask you for feedback after our initial meeting with you and at the end of the service. However, you can provide feedback at any other time by:

Calling or emailing the manager on 07704153009 or info@ammabirthcompanions.org

Speaking to your birth companion

If you don’t speak English, let us know and we will call back with an interpreter.

Many concerns can be dealt with at this stage but, in some cases, you may feel more comfortable speaking to someone who is not directly involved in the matter. In this case, you can contact the Chair of the Board of Trustees by emailing chair@ammabirthcompanions.org.

3.1.3 External Agencies and individuals

We actively seek feedback from partner agencies through our Advisory Group and from labour ward midwives after every birth. However, we welcome feedback at any time. This can be provided by calling the manager on 07704153009 or emailing info@ammabirthcompanions.org

If you have fed back to us about a positive experience, we will make sure the right individual receives this feedback.

3.2 Complaints

How to Make a Complaint

If you feel that providing feedback is not enough, you can file a complaint to the Chair of the Board of Trustees by emailing chair@ammabirthcompanions.org

You should make your complaint within three months of the incident or within three months of the matter coming to your attention. This time limit can sometimes be extended as long as it is still possible to investigate your complaint.

If the matter relates to the Manager, the Chair of the Board of Trustees can be contacted at chair@ammabirthcompanions.org

3.2.2 What to Expect after Making a Complaint

We take complaints seriously. We aim to respond to complaints, concerns and feedback as quickly as possible— usually within seven working days of you getting in touch.

Sometimes we may need to investigate your complaint or concern in more detail to ensure we take the appropriate action. In this case, we will aim to respond to you within 28 days. Depending on how complex the complaint or concern is, we may need some more time to look into it. If that is the case, we will contact you to keep you updated. When the investigation is complete, we will contact you again to provide our response, including what we plan to do about it.

3.2.3 Who can Make a Complaint?

Anyone can complain and this can include a family member, carer, or a friend of the service user. Please note that this policy is for service users, organisations or members of the public who have interacted in any way with Amma. This includes fundraisers and funders.

This policy does not cover complaints made by Amma staff, volunteers and trustees who need to follow agreed grievance, disciplinary or other internal procedures.

3.2.4 Appeal Procedure

If you are unhappy with the response you have received to your initial complaint, please let us know within 21 days of hearing from us, as we would like the chance to try and make it right. This will be passed to the Manager or the Trustees who will confirm:

  • The final decision about the complaint
  • The reason for the decision
  • The redress, if appropriate, which will be offered to you e.g. an apology, additional help or directing to other sources of advice or support
  • Any action that will be taken in light of the complaint

You also have the right to contact any of these organisations for further help:

  • Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR)
  • Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel

Usually these organisations will take up a case after giving us an opportunity to reply or provide some more information.

3.2.5 Feedback on the Complaints Procedure

If, having received the outcome of your appeal, you are not satisfied that Amma has followed the process properly and dealt with your complaint fairly (e.g. if you feel you have been given insufficient opportunity to represent your view or ensure all relevant people are involved in the investigation), then you can outline the reasons for your dissatisfaction by letter or email within 21 working days of receiving our response to request a review of the complaints handling process. This will not be a further investigation of the complaint.

Amma will then arrange a review of the complaint-handling process and will inform you of how this will be carried out. The decision of the process review will be final. The Chair of the Board of Trustees will communicate in writing within 28 working days of receiving your feedback to confirm:

  • Whether or not the policy has been followed properly and fairly
  • The reason for the decision
  • The redress, if appropriate, which will be offered to you e.g. an apology, additional help or directing to other sources of advice or support
  • What action will be taken in light of the review

Amma is a registered charity, no. SC049280 (Scotland). We are registered with the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) which regulates charities in Scotland along with the Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel. If you have a complaint about our fundraising, you should always try and raise it with us first. If, however, you are not happy with how we are dealing with your complaint or do not feel your matter has been addressed, then you can also complain to the Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel.