Making sure that children in our care are safeguarded is not only the right thing to do, but is the most important thing to do as a responsible organisation. The Happy Africa Foundation commits to making sure that all our projects are child safe and to make sure that all our staff, volunteers and partners equally engage with our communities with the protection, care and respect due to the children we work with.
What is Child Protection?
Child protection refers to the policies, standards, guidelines and procedures designed to protect children from both intentional and unintentional harm. In particular, our child protection extends to any person under the age of 21 years old, both as a beneficiary or client (volunteer/intern). We have developed a Child Protection Policy to make a statement about our intention to safeguard children from harm and to openly proclaim our intentions and prescribe our actions accordingly. Our intention with our child protection statement is to create a safe and positive environment for children to learn and thrive, and to clearly state how important the protection of children is in our organisation.
Why is it important for organisations to have a Child Protection Policy?
We have outlined the importance of having a child-centred policy, adequate guidelines and systems in place, that safeguards and creates a conducive environment for learning and developing for all the children who participate in our projects.
- Organisations working with children have a moral and legal obligation to safeguard children in their care. With already high levels of exposure to violence and abuse, the way to turn the tided for the children we work with, is to make sure that our organization protects them from harm, both direct and indirectly.
- Having a policy to safeguard children, our organisation creates awareness of the best interest of the child and this becomes the core of all our decisions and planning organisationally.
- The intention of the policy is to make the children feel safe, make the children feel like they are listened to, that the children can speak out about any abuse or violence experienced, and where the children, staff and associates are respected and empowered.
- A strong policy guides our organisation in correct procedures.
- Having a child protection policy gives us credibility as an organisation with outside partners such as donors.
How can we help you?
Child protecting and safeguarding children is the utmost duty of any organisation to uphold the best interest of the child, and so we encourage other organisations to do the same. If you need any help with developing your Child Protection systems, we also provide consultation services, so please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Child Protection Consultation”.