In our blog posts we talk a lot about the cultural aspect of having an Au Pair and the importance of the mutual exchange of culture. But it’s important not to forget that first and foremost we are a child care agency. As such, we have a responsibility to our families and to our partner agency to have Au Pairs that are joining the program with the best intentions.
Recently Adanac Au Pair owner, Sarah Kelly, successfully passed a program through the Canadian Centre for Child Protection called Commit to Kids to learn more about protecting children from predators and how to improve upon our Child Protection Code of Conduct.
Who are they?
Canadian Centre for Child Protection is a registered charity dedicated to the personal safety of all children. Wilma, a mother whose child disappeared and was murdered, started the organization in 1985 with a group of dedicated volunteers. The group expanded to fill the gap of child protection in Canada and has been growing ever since. They provide programs and services to better educate and promote safety for children.
The Commit to Kids program is a step-by-step plan to help child-serving organizations reduce the risk of child sexual abuse and create safer environments for the children in their care.
Why take the program?
We decided to take the Commit to Kids program to educate staff on the prevention of child sexual abuse. It is our responsibility as a placement agency to ensure each applicant is coming to Canada or going abroad with the right intentions. Police checks are mandatory for each placement but sometimes that’s not enough. Understanding grooming manoeuvres and questioning behaviours will help our organization better protect children by creating boundary standards.
It has also helped us with our Child Protection Code of Conduct that Au Pair applicants sign before starting their placement. The Child Protection Code of Conduct is a set of written statements that outline expectations of boundaries and an enforcement structure that will be implemented if such boundaries are crossed. By increasing our knowledge, we also want to teach our Au Pairs about appropriate behaviour with children. By having set standards we can ensure safety to host children as well as professional growth with our Au Pairs.
What are some other programs?
The Canadian Centre for Child Protection is a plethora of information on child safety. Here are some other programs that they provide. All this information is from their website which you can visit here.
CyberTips.ca is Canada’s tipline for reporting the online sexual exploitation of children. Created in September 2002 by the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, Cybertips.ca receives over 2,000 reports per month from Canadians. All reports concerning incidents that are potentially in contravention of the Criminal Code of Canada are sent to police for possible investigation and any information about a child potentially in need of protection is sent to child welfare.
MissingKids.ca is Canada’s missing children resource and response centre. We offer families support in finding their missing child and provide educational materials to help present children from going missing. As a resource centre, MissingKids.ca partners with police and other stakeholders in the search for missing children.
Kids in the Know is a national interactive safety education program for increasing the personal safety of children and reducing their risk of victimisation online and in the real world. Designed for children from kindergarten to high school, it focuses on building self-esteem through teaching critical problem-solving skills. The core foundation of the program is based on 7 Roots Safety Strategies and 4 Root Safety Environments.