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Child Rights & Protection Making your organization child safe Questions or problems during the webinar?

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Presentation on theme: "Child Rights & Protection Making your organization child safe Questions or problems during the webinar?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Child Rights & Protection Making your organization child safe Questions or problems during the webinar? Email

2 What Are Child Rights? Protections given to children to ensure a happy and healthy development without fear of harm or exploitation Rights that all children are born with Rights that are not based on gender, religion, ethnicity, class, age, race, or other factors

3 International Treaties on Child Rights 1989 UN Convention on the Rights of the Child

4 What Are These Rights? Article 6 Governments, institutions, organizations, and individuals shall work to ensure survival and development of each child. Life Article 14 All children have the right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion. Belief Article 24 All children have the right to health and healthcare facilities. Health Article 28 All children have the right to an education. Education Article 29 Education should be directed to the development of children’s personalities, mental and physical abilities, and talents. Development Article 32 All children have the right to be protected from economic exploitation and hazardous work. Safe Work UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989)

5 Child Protection: Making your organization child safe What is child protection? Policies, standards, guidelines, and procedures to protect children from both intentional and unintentional harm Why is it important? Prevent incidents between staff and children or between children Prevent legal issues that may emerge from inappropriate behavior Show donors your commitment to keeping children safe Gain satisfaction in doing all that you can to protect children

6 Child Protection Policy & Staff Code of Conduct Make your organization more child safe: We recommend that your organization have a written child protection policy and staff code of conduct.

7 Child Protection Policy & Staff Behavior Code of Conduct What Should a Child Protection Policy Include? Recognition of the rights of childrenProcedures on staff recruitment and trainingGuidelines on the use of photos and stories of childrenProcedures for reporting child abuse What Should a Staff Behavior Code of Conduct Include? Guidelines for appropriate and inappropriate staff behavior Acceptable disciplinary procedures and unacceptable disciplinary measures

8 Child Protection Activity Discuss 10 minutes You are visiting one of your project sites and you see a child steal some school supplies. A staff member approaches and begins shouting very loudly at the misbehaving child. Other children at the site gather around to see what’s going on. The staff member grabs the child by the arm and spanks the child. The staff member calls the child “stupid and selfish,” and the other children laugh. The child does not cry and is later seen playing with the other children. Now You! Scenario: Discipline 1.What was appropriate or inappropriate about the staff member’s behavior? 2.What would you say to the staff member about the way he/she handled this situation? 3.If you were the staff member, what would you do with the misbehaving child?

9 Child Protection Activity Responses: Discipline Appropriate Responses What would you say? None. Staff should never embarrass or hurt a child. The way that the staff member handled the situation was not respectful of the child’s rights, and the staff member should apologize to the child. (A supervisor should follow up with the staff member regarding appropriate discipline.) What would you do? Ask the child why he/she is stealing supplies. Away from other children, explain why stealing is wrong. Give the child a punishment that is appropriate, non-physical, and not humiliating.

10 Child Protection Activity Discuss 10 minutes A staff member is talking with a girl who is fairly new to an organization’s programs. The staff member asks the girl if she feels comfortable around the people who work at the organization. The girl says that she does not like that one of the volunteers asks her to go on walks at night, just the two of them. The staff member then talks to a boy in the program, and he says that his friend was inappropriately touched by the same volunteer. The staff member pulls the volunteer aside and walks with the volunteer to a quiet and secure place to talk about the matter. The volunteer denies all inappropriate behavior and becomes very angry. The volunteer then demands to know which children the staff member talked to. The staff member tells the volunteer the names of the children, and the volunteer calls them liars. The staff member decides to trust the volunteer because the volunteer has worked with the project for a long time and because the volunteer is good friends with one of the organization’s donors. Now You! Scenario: Staff Behavior 1.In this scenario, what were some things that the staff member did appropriately or inappropriately? 2.In this scenario, what could the staff member improve upon when listening to the children and reporting abuse of a child? 3.What are three ways that this organization can prevent abuse or inappropriate staff or volunteer behavior from occurring?

11 Child Protection Activity Responses: Staff Behavior Appropriate Responses What do you do? It’s good to ask for feedback and really listen. Be sure to follow up on comments and get to the source. Do not break confidentiality, and follow up with an investigation. Child safety comes first. Tell the child that it was the right thing to tell you. Write a formal report and tell a supervisor. Refer all of the children involved to a specialist to provide further support. Prevent abuse Have a written staff code of conduct and a child protection policy. Conduct training and background checks for all staff and volunteers. Let children know whom they can talk to if something is wrong.

12 Child Protection Activity Discuss 10 minutes You are a staff member supervising an activity. You hear a group of children laughing meanly, and you go over to investigate. You see one of the new students, who is part of a minority ethnic group, hit one of the laughing children. The child falls to the ground and grabs his/her nose, which is bleeding. You take the new student aside and talk calmly to him/her, saying that the organization does not permit hitting, and you give the new student extra responsibilities for a week. The next day, you learn that the student has been teased and bullied since arriving at your program three weeks ago. The student’s friend also approaches you and says that she has known about the teasing for about two weeks. You become angry at the friend for waiting so long to disclose that information. For the rest of the week, you are not assigned to that group of children. Now You! Scenario: Bullying 1.In this scenario, what were some things that you (as the staff member) handled correctly or incorrectly? 2.How should the staff member have handled the bullying differently? 3.List at least three ways that this organization can prevent bullying from happening.

13 Child Protection Activity Responses: Bullying Appropriate Responses What do you do? Respond calmly and giving a non-physical punishment. Follow up with the new student, reward those who report bullying, and inform other staff of the situation. Ask the new student why he/she hit the other child and discuss bullying with all of the children who were teasing. Reward the friend who reported the bullying and make sure the bullying has stopped. Tell the other staff members. Prevent bullying Write an anti-bullying policy, with the help of the children. Raise awareness and discuss bullying with the children. Make sure that children know whom they can talk to if they are being bullied.

14 Staff Behavior Create a staff behavior code of conduct with do’s and don’ts for staff members. Make sure that all staff members know what is expected of them and what is not. Conduct orientation or training for new volunteers and staff members. Remind staff and volunteers of policies and procedures annually. Recommendations: What are some examples of appropriate and inappropriate staff behavior? Now You!

15 Discipline Do not: hit, kick, beat, or throw things at children when they misbehave. Do not humiliate children in any way. Do: have a conversation with children about acceptable and unacceptable behaviors. Recommendations: What are examples of good and bad ways to discipline a child? Now You!

16 Bullying Recommendations: Have conversations with children about bullying. Ensure that children know what to do if they or their peers are being bullied. With the help of children, develop an anti-bullying policy that states what behaviors are unacceptable and what to do if someone is being bullied. Make sure the anti-bullying policy is communicated to everyone: children and staff. What are some ways that your organization can prevent bullying from happening? Now You!

17 Child Participation Make sure all children can participate, regardless of ability, religion, race, gender, etc. Child participation should be voluntary and age- appropriate. Encourage children to suggest ways in which your organization can improve. Train staff to effectively support children in their participation Recommendations: What are some of the challenges and rewards of child participation in your organization? Now You!

18 Child Protection Manual The Child Protection Manual includes information on all the topics we’ve discussed. Recommendations on acceptable and unacceptable staff behavior A sample staff behavior code of conduct Possible signs of child abuse or neglect How to encourage child participation in writing or implementing policies Forms of acceptable and unacceptable discipline Guidelines on making an anti-bullying policy Other resources for your organization to explore

19 Conclusion What did you learn today? Please take the post- webinar survey. What are your remaining questions? Thank you for your participation! Now You! Contact: Sarah Ellison

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