Creating a Safer Community For Children
The Christie Refugee Welcome Centre is committed to the well-being of children and to providing a safe environment and communities for children. We continually review our policies and procedures to ensure that everything reasonably possible is done to reduce the risk to children residing at the shelter, participating in its Outreach Program and those arriving in Canada under the Sponsorship Program from any form of abuse or neglect, including sexual abuse.
This includes the implementation of a child protection policy that encompasses the following areas:
Awareness raising about child abuse and the protection of children
Programme planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation focusing on the participation and protection of children
Recruitment and screening of staff, volunteers, interns/student placements and board members, and screening of visitors.
Managing visitors to CRWC programs.
Behavioural protocols/codes of conduct for all those linked with CRWC
Allegation and incident management
Advocacy on child protection and child rights
Communication about children
Confidentiality of all child information
Partner organizations and their commitment to children
Christie Refugee Welcome Centre would like children and their families to feel comfortable and at ease while involved in our programs and when welcoming visitors. We also would like visitors and volunteers to have a positive experience when participating in our programs. As a result, CRWC has very specific behaviour protocols (also called codes of conduct) for staff, volunteers, interns/student placements, contractors, visitors, and all who are associated with CRWC.
These behaviour protocols are as follows:
Treat all children with respect and dignity
Listen to children
Be culturally sensitive regarding familiarity in language, dress, and physical intimacy and observe them.
Do not slap, hit or physically abuse a child. CRWC does not support corporal punishment but recommends alternative methods of discipline.
Do not touch sexual areas of the body or have sex with a child. Having sex with a child is a grave offense.
Do not expose anyone to sexual materials or abuse them through non contact sexual activity.
Do not psychologically and/or verbally abuse any child.
Practice the ‘two-adult’ rule, wherein two or more adults supervise all activities where minors or children are involved.
Stop any interaction with a child if a child says stop, or if the child appears uncomfortable with the interaction.
Always ask permission from a child and the child’s parents/guardian if you wish to take a photograph.
CRWC staff are expected and required to report any suspicions of child abuse.
CRWC has policy and procedures that respond to allegations and accusations which allow for a process that respects all involved.
Non-compliance with these requirements will be taken seriously.
All staff and volunteers must have a police background clearance
All visitors to CRWC programs must be accompanied by a CRWC staff member at all times.
All interns/students, board members and other personnel are expected to sign a document that signifies that they agree to abide by the behaviour protocols.