Concordia works with children and young people with special protection needs. In all activities and decisions, the main point of orientation is the best interest of the child.
The services offered to children are implemented by national organisations, following national laws. These are mainly shelter projects for children who cannot live with their parents or relatives for a certain period of time, and day centres that support families in need and prevent family separation.
Due to the high demand, we have been caring for children and mothers who have been victims of domestic violence since 2020.
Concordia's Child Protection Policy has been developed to ensure that children and young people are not harmed while they are involved in the organisation's activities and to ensure the highest standards of professional practice and personal conduct in relation to child protection.
How we keep children safe
- All staff are selected and trained on their ethical behaviour towards children and young people to avoid violations of children's rights.
- Staff recognise any signals of violence against children and report any suspicions.
- All individuals working with Concordia, in their roles as board members, consultants, contractors, partners, sponsors and donors, guests and visitors, journalists, animators or escorts, who work with and for children - whether for events, meetings, projects, fundraising, visits, recreational activities, trips, camps - must respect children's rights and ensure a familiar, safe space.
- Children are educated about their rights and about proper behaviour towards others so that they are informed and know how respectful adults, staff, volunteers and peers should be towards each other and towards them.
Development process of the Concordia Child Protection Policy
Concordia's Child Protection Policy was developed through a bottom-up process and many discussions with children, young people, staff, management level, volunteers and project partners. We value their suggestions, ideas, feelings and experiences and have incorporated these into the guidelines. The guidelines are anchored in our mission, values, approaches and projects so that they can be implemented by all staff, volunteers, board members, donors and visitors, as well as the children and young people of the organisation.
Child-friendly preparation of the child protection guideline
The Concordia Child Protection Policy is not only known by all staff members, but also by the children themselves. Children and young people need to know their rights. For this reason, a child-friendly version of the Child Protection Policy was developed.
In a six-month process, a child-friendly version was created in workshops and interviews with the children and young people. With the help of drawings and essays, the children and young people dealt with the topic. Subsequently, the child-friendly version of the Concordia Child Protection Policy was translated into all national languages.
After this process, every child at Concordia knows about their rights!