CHILD PROTECTION POLICY
According to UNICEF a child is any person below 18 years.
Make It Happen believes that it is always unacceptable for a child or young person to experience abuse of any kind and recognises its responsibility to safeguard all children and young people and promote their welfare, by a commitment to practice which protects them.
DEFINITIONS OF ABUSE
- Physical abuse: Actual or likely deliberate physical injury to a child, or failure to prevent physical suffering and injury to a child.
- Sexual abuse: Actual or likely sexual exploitation of a child. The involvement of children in sexual activities they do not fully comprehend, and to which they are unable to give informed consent or that violates the social taboos of family roles.
- Emotional abuse: Actual or likely significant emotional ill treatment, including bullying and harassment resulting in severe adverse effects on the emotional, physical or behavioral development of a child. All abuse involves some emotional ill treatment.
MAKE IT HAPPEN recognizes that:
The welfare of the child/young is paramount
- All children, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, belief, sexual orientation or identity have the right to equal protection from all types of harm and abuse.
- Working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare.
The purpose of the policy:
- To provide protection for the children and young people who receive MAKE IT HAPPEN services, including the children of adult members or users.
- To provide staff and volunteers with guidance on procedures the should adopt in the event that they suspect a child or young person may be experiencing, or be at risk of harm. This policy applies to all staff, including senior managers and the board of directors or anyone working on behalf of MAKE IT HAPPEN.
- To advocate for and educating communities on child rights, safety and protection.
- To create awareness on need for child protection, safety and rights including, without limitations through education, arts and culture, theatre, sports and seminars.
We will seek to safeguard children and young people by:
- Advocating for and educating the community on child rights, safety and protection.
- Providing pre and post as well as transitional adoptive care and support to both children and families.
- Undertaking research so as to identify better ways to improve child protection, safety and rights.
- Creating a universal approach that ensures every child gets an equal start to life.
- Lobbying for policy reviews/ changes and recommendations to the legislators.
- Lobbying for child rights to be global
- Encourage child adoption with intention of ensuring every child gets a chance to be raised in a safe family focused environment.
- Providing support and care of children who are victims of domestic violence, child abuse and child trafficking.
- Creating awareness on need for child protection, safety and rights including, without limitations through education, arts and culture, theatre, sports and seminars.
2 Procedures for Referral
2.1 All action is taken in line with the following legislation/guidance:
2.2 Any member of staff or volunteer who receives a disclosure of abuse or suspects that abuse may have occurred must report it immediately to the designated person for child protection Annastacia Njeri Wainaina or if unavailable to the deputy designated person (insert name). In the absence of either of the above, the matter should be brought to the attention of the most senior member of staff.
2.3 The designated person will immediately inform the Department of family and community services.
2.4 Confidentiality must be maintained and information relating to individual children and young people/families shared with staff on a strictly need to know basis.
3 Alleged Abuse by Staff, Managers, Volunteers or Trustees
3.1 When an allegation is made against a member of staff or volunteer, then the allegation must be passed to your designated person for child protection Annastacia Njeri Wainaina or their deputy (insert name), or, it the allegation concerns them both, direct to the Department of family and community services.
3.2 Your designated person for child protection should contact an officer from the Department of family and community services for consultation.
- Department of family and community services officer
- The designated officer contacted will record a note of the consultation and will advise on the appropriate action that needs to be taken.
4 Record Keeping
- 4.1 Any member of staff or volunteer receiving a disclosure of abuse, or noticing possible abuse, must make an accurate record as soon as possible noting what was said or seen, putting the event into context and giving the date, time and location. All records must be dated and signed.
- 4.2 All hand- written records will be retained, even if they are subsequently typed up in a more formal report.
- 4.3 Written records of concerns about children should be kept even when there is no need to make a referral immediately.
- 4.4 All records relating to child protection concerns will be kept in a secure place and will remain confidential.
5 Parental Involvement
- 5.1 This organization is committed to helping parents/carers understand it’s responsibility for the welfare of all children and young people.
- 5.2 Parents/carers will be given information about the organizations child protection procedures.
- 5.3 Where possible, concerns should be discussed with parents/carers and the designated person should seek agreement to making a referral, unless to do so would place the child/young person at increased risk of significant harm.
- 6.1 The designated person and his/her deputy must receive training every 3 years in child protection.
- 6.2 All staff and volunteers shall have access to induction training on commencing and appropriate refresher training on a regular basis, at least every 3 years.
7 The Role of the Management Group or Governing Body
- 7.1 The designated person for child protection should provide an annual report for the management group/board members on changes to child protection policy or procedures; training undertaken by the designated person, other staff, volunteer and board of governors; the number of child protection cases (without detail or name); and the place of child protection issues in planning.
- 8.1 This policy will be reviewed on an annual basis and updated where appropriate.
- Treat all children and young people with respect- provide an example of good conduct you wish others to follow.
- Ensure that, whenever possible, there is more than one adult present during activities which children and young people or at least that you are within sight or hearing of others.
- Respect a young person’s rights to personal privacy
- Encourage young people and adults to be comfortable and caring enough to point out attitudes or behaviour they do not like.
- Remember that someone else might misinterpret your actions, no matter how well-intentioned.
- Recongnise that special caution is required when you are discussing sensitive issues with children or young people.
- Operate within the organisation’s principles and guidance and any specific procedures.
- Challenge unacceptable behaviour and report all allegations/suspicions of abuse.
You must not.
- Have appropriate physical or verbal contact with children or young people.
- Allow yourself to be drawn into inappropriate attention-seeking behaviour/ make suggestive or derogatory remarks or gestures in front of children or young people.
- Jump to conclusions about others without checking facts.
- Either exaggerate or trivialise child abuse issues- show favoritism to any individual.
- Relay on your good name or that of the organisation (faith or charity) to protect you- Believe it could never happen to me”
- Take a chance when common sense, policy or practise suggets another more prudent approach.
In accordance with UNICEF, all children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfil their potential – to the benefit of a better world.
+254 743 150 803
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