CSC COMMITMENT TO PROTECTION OF CHILDREN AND VULNERABLE PERSONS

 

1   Guiding Principles

Strathmore University is a mission oriented University that interacts with children and vulnerable persons at various levels and is committed to the safeguarding and protection of these vulnerable groups of persons.

The overriding principle in the University in dealing with children and vulnerable persons is the best interest of a child or vulnerable person. Further, the following principles supplement the overriding principle:

a)All children and vulnerable persons shall be treated equally and protected from abuse and exploitation without discrimination.

b)Children and vulnerable persons will be assured the right to express their views freely and this will be given ‘relevant attention to address any issues relating to improving their safeguarding. Everybody interacting with the University shall be expected to support the care and protection of children.

These responsibilities extend to those individuals or organisations who are associated with the University. Therefore, everyone who is a member of, working for or associated with the University work must be aware of and bound by the provisions of the University policies on the protection of children and vulnerable persons.

2  Standards in Dealing with Children and Vulnerable Persons

 a)Every school student being onboarded onto the Macheo programme or other CSC programme shall be subjected to an interview and the selected students shall sign the prescribed form annexed to this Agreement.

b)The CSC Director will occasionally conduct induction and training sessions whose topics will include the protection of children at the beginning of the engagement of any new cohort of students and University members involved in Macheo or other CSC programme.

c)Parents are the main educators of their children. CSC counts on them for the accomplishment of its formative objectives insofar as the parents are available. Therefore, all mentors will make an effort to avail themselves for official meetings with the families of the School students as maybe required by CSC from time to time.

d)The CSC shall endeavour to protect all personal data of the school students in the CSC programs in line with the University Statutes, Regulations and Policies on Data protection

e)Mentors, volunteers, tutors and staff shall not display symbols, emblems or actions that promote violence or degrade the dignity of persons.

f)In all CSC activities, the consumption of drugs, alcohol, tobacco and other substances harmful to health will be avoided. Hygienic standards will be observed in relation to the handling of food in the preparation of meals as required by the University policies on the same.

g)All activities of CSC shall comply with the standard safety provisions of the University. These activities provide a good opportunity for the Mentors to bond and interact with school students which aids in the aim of achieving the ends of the CSC outreach program.

h)All activities involving school students will be taken care of by at least two Mentors who are adults, preferably one staff member and one university student.

i)No CSC activity will entail a level of difficulty beyond that which is reasonable. When undertaking certain activities such as sports or trips that may pose a higher risk, express authorization of the parents must be obtained.

j)CSC will take care of road safety and will carefully designate those who drive the vehicles that are used for the transportation of the School students. An adult will not travel by car alone with a school student, unless he has the explicit consent of the parents and, even so,

k)Quick and firm action will be taken in situations of possible harassment or abuse, whether physical or mental, oral or written. School students will be encouraged to respect each other and to avoid fighting, insults, or any other action that may lead some to feel offended, even if the facts are presented as a joke. All instances involving allegations against a University member shall be investigated and acted upon without undue delays.

l)In dealing with school students and their families and the Volunteers will keep in mind the following practices which are aimed at ensuring respect for persons and the appropriate interaction between children and adults

A mentor, volunteer or tutor should not be alone with a school student in an isolated place.

The school students will be encouraged to practise modesty as a sign of respect for others and for themselves. School students and mentors, volunteers or tutors should avoid being together in changing rooms. The same rule applies to younger and older school students as well as male and female students.

iii.There should be no inappropriate manifestation of affection between the mentors, tutors or volunteers and School Students.

When mentors, tutors or Volunteers attend to a student alone, they should try to do it in a place in full view of others. If they use a room, it must have a glass door or, if not, the door will be left open.

m)In the event of possible harassment, abuse or mistreatment of a school student, prudent, clear, quick and decisive action shall be taken in accordance with the specified procedures.

n)The Volunteers should avoid any manifestation that could be interpreted as favouritism or partiality towards a particular family or a particular school student. They should refrain from accepting individual personal gifts from the families of the students and report all such instances to the CSC office.

o) These standards shall be made available to and observed by all those involved in the activities of CSC.