Our Work

Annual reports

Our annual reports are a great way to find out more about the charity,

Role of appropriate adults

Find out more about the role of appropriate adults in the justice system.  

Who we are

NAAN is a registered charity aiming to ensure the rights and welfare of the most vulnerable people in our society by developing effective appropriate adults. We are a membership organisation open to organisations and individuals. We don't provide appropriate adults but many of our member organisations do. 


Every child and vulnerable adult detained or interviewed by police has their rights and welfare safeguarded effectively by an appropriate adult.


To gather, develop and share knowledge, skills and standards that inform, inspire and support effective appropriate adult policy and practice.


People arrested and/or interviewed by police who are: - 

  • Children and young people (aged 10 to 17) 

  • Adults who are mentally vulnerable (including but not exclusively; mental health, learning disabilities and difficulties, autistic spectrum disorders, severe dyslexia)  

We work with 

  • Appropriate adults (parents, relatives, carers and support workers; professionals; community volunteers)

  • Appropriate adult schemes (local authorities, private sector, charities)

  • Appropriate adult commissioners and funders (both current and potential)

  • Influencers including reformers, academics, media and service users

  • Policy makers including civil servants and politicians.

Strategic objectives

  • Improve practice: More children and vulnerable adults are safeguarded by effective appropriate adults operating to national standards

  • Improve policy: National and local policy development and implementation enable appropriate adults to be effective

  • Improve ourselves NAAN is a more effective, efficient and sustainable organisation


  • Raising awareness 
  • Setting national standards

  • Developing guidance

  • Supporting volunteering

  • Informing parents and carers

  • Providing training

  • Conducting research

  • Informing policy

 If you require an Appropriate Adult, you can search for your local NAAN member using the network map.

Legal Status

Initiated as an informal practitioner network, the National Appropriate Adult Network (NAAN) became a registered charity on 5th July 2004 and is a company limited by guarantee. 


NAAN supports the role of the appropriate adult as constituted under the law in England and Wales. NAAN includes members from outside England and Wales (such as Jersey and Guernsey). However NAAN does not cover the AA role in Scotland as defined under Scots Law. 


NAAN is a member of: -


NAAN is currently funded via: -

  • Membership fees
  • Earned income from the provision of training
  • Home Office grant funding
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