1. Definitions: For the purposes of Mobile Creches’ Child Protection Policy- A child means every person below the age of eighteen years.
Child abuse is any kind of harm leading to sexual, physical and mental abuse, unintentionally / deliberately caused to a child.
2. Purpose of the Policy: As an organisation committed to enabling young children of marginalized and mobile populations to develop into competent and confident individuals, and supporting the Convention of the Rights of the Child, Mobile Creches does not tolerate child abuse.
Mobile Creches recognises that the children that it is working with, in the urban slums and construction sites, are exposed to and come in contact with various people. Hence, Mobile Creches needs to ensure that these children are not endangered due to this.
Mobile Creches expects its employees and others who work with the organization, to have children’s best interests at the heart of their involvement with the organisation. The purpose of this policy is to ensure a secure, safe and protective environment for all the children MC is working with and put in place procedures to prevent and deal with all forms of child abuse at the Mobile Creches workplace and within its operating hours.
Scope and Coverage of the Policy: Mobile Creches’ engagement with children takes place through a variety of interactions, ranging from provision of daycare services by its staff to training community women and facilitating similar field-based initiatives. So, while MC will do its best to promote a secure, safe and protective environment for children that it is working with, it recognises that it has varying degrees of control with regards to prevention and redressal of child abuse.
‘Others’ includes official visitors, board members, doctors, volunteers, consultants, resource persons, trainees, older children, alumni and interns; regardless of the duration of their association with the organisation.
To operationalise the Policy (details in the policy document) MC will:
Take proactive action to prevent child abuse in any form at the MC’s workplace and within its operating hours
Enable early detection, redressal and follow-up of all cases of abuse of children MC is working with, whether at the MC workplace/within operating hours or in their homes/community
Take action, possible within its domain, against any abuser - MC’s employee/any other person (as identified in the footnote) engaged with MC’s children
Duties and Responsibilities for Dissemination and Implementation of the Policy (details in the policy document)
Confidentiality and Protection: The Complaints Committee (details of constitution of the committee, the investigation process and recommendations, in Annexure I of policy document) will address complaints and carry out the investigation process in a manner that respects the confidentiality and privacy of complainants, child abused and alleged offenders.
In exceptional situations, the Complaints Committee may decide to set aside the commitment to confidentiality, such as in cases where legal proceedings are initiated and the organisation is required to disclose information, or in cases where disclosure is deemed necessary to protect the interests of others.
Under the terms of this policy, the organisation is committed to provide support and protection to complainants. Measures will also be taken to prevent further abuse of the child on account of having filed a complaint.
Amendments to the Policy
Based on the experiences of implementing the policy, the Complaints Committee may make recommendations to the GC about changes in the policy. The GC will have the authority to make the required changes.