Sport comes with its own risks. Because female athletes and sport participants are subject to the influence and control of predominantly male coaches, teachers and officials, there can be a risk of harassment and sexual abuse. Policies and procedures to protect adolescent girls and ensure they have safe spaces in which to train, learn and compete, are critical.55
Part of creating a safe space means developing clear guidelines and codes of conduct for all staff, as well as participants. In addition, there must be clear and accessible processes and procedures if these policies and codes are violated. Child protection is about keeping children, especially adolescent girls, safe from abuse and protecting them from people unsuitable to work with children. Every organisation has a responsibility to provide a safe environment for children and young people. Women Win believes that implementing Child Protection Policies is important because:
- It is a fundamental human rights issue.
- It is unethical to not work on it if we talk about SRHR.
- It needs to be mainstreamed into everything we do.
- It is fundamental for quality programmes and services.
For more information and sample policies, codes of conduct see Child Protection Policies and Procedures.