Child Protection Policy
Toybank, the flagship project of The Opentree Foundation is an organisation in India that promotes the Right to Play for all children. It provides a unique platform for all individuals of all ages to participate in this movement of propagating the Right to Childhood.
As an organisation whose work revolves around children, Toybank is committed to protecting the child from harmful influences, abuse and exploitation.
Toybank is committed to creating a child safe environment both internally and externally where children are respected and protected and the staff is equipped to protect the child.
The Child Protection Policy applies to everyone working for or associated with Toybank.
- All of Toybank Staff - working in office or on the field
- Toybank Associates – this includes Board members, volunteers, interns, consultants and contractors. This would also include all the partner organisations who come in contact with children for their work with Toybank
- Toybank Visitors – this would include donors, media, celebrities etc who may come in contact with children through Toybank
CODE OF CONDUCT OF ALL TOYBANK STAFF, ASSOCIATES AND VISITORS
The code shall apply to all the people mentioned here and will be applicable while working on our premises, at offsite locations where our projects are being implemented, at Toybank’s events, or at any other place where the above Person(s) are a representative of Toybank:
- Never abuse and/or exploit a child or behave in any way that places a child at risk of harm
- Will not promise and/or give children and their families/ caretakers verbally/ non- verbally any monetary or non-monetary favours without the knowledge and permission of Toybank management.
- Will not allow children (beneficiaries of Toybank) to visit or stay in their homes under any pretext without the prior knowledge and agreement of the Toybank management
- Will not spend time alone with a child or children without any professional reason to do so - Such as (i) where personnel are employed as professionally recognized trained counsellors, (ii) in case of lesson plans and individual sessions done by trainers during Personal Safety Education Programme, etc.
- Will not touch, see or talk about private body parts and/ any other sexual content to children or show them any material of sexual nature except in cases of the health/ hygiene, Personal Safety Education Project and individual/ counselling sessions and any other platform for involving children in the designing/ evaluation of Toybank services which is being done for protection purposes.
- Will take permission from children, their parents/ guardians and schools and/ from the participants of a workshop and training session before taking and using any photos and videos involving these beneficiaries.
- Will have to exercise behaviour protocols consistent with Toybank values in their relationship with children, in the context of their language, actions, dress, and behaviour.
- Will respect the local cultural and/ religious context and behave in appropriate manner with children in communities.
- Must not disclose information that identifies sponsored families and children or make it available to the general public without the permission of Toybank
BREACH OF CONDUCT
The Child Protection Policy is a guideline for all members mentioned in this document to take appropriate action whenever there is a breach of any code of conduct at Toybank, thereby ensuring the protection of all children who directly or indirectly come in touch with the organization and its services.
- Report any child abuse and protection concerns they have in accordance with the applicable procedure. This is a mandatory requirement for staff and failure to do so may result in disciplinary action
- Cooperate fully and confidentially in any investigation of concern or allegations
- Where concern exists about the conduct of staff or associates in relation to child protection and/or if there has been a breach of the Child Protection Policy this will be investigated under this policy either; by consideration of referral to statutory authorities for criminal investigation under local laws or in accordance with Toybank’s disciplinary procedure. Be aware that Toybank will severe all relations with associate or visitor who is proven to have committed child abuse
- If a legitimate concern about suspected child abuse if raised, which proves to be unfounded on an investigation, no action will be taken against the reporter. However, any employee who makes false and malicious accusations will face disciplinary action. Be aware that Toybank will however take appropriate legal or other action against Toybank associates and visitors who make false and malicious accusations of child abuse
Any report of a breach of the Child Protection Policy will be reported to the CEO of The Opentree Foundation.