EDEN, an organisation guaranteeing the safeguarding of children

Eden safeguarding children

Anita Ysidee

North Africa


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*Translation may contain errors. See the original article in french

I have been passionate about children's rights for over 10 years and my interest in safeguarding children has grown in recent years as a result of some scandals involving organisations that are supposed to respect and protect the rights of vulnerable people.

Fortunately, organisations working for children are increasingly taking responsibility for ensuring their safety by developing formal policies to better protect them.

As a volunteer with the NGO EDEN (Education and Development of Children) in Dakar (Senegal) for the past 4 months, one of the main focuses of my mandate was to accompany the organisation in its efforts to achieve the status of a child protection organisation.


Photo credits : Anita Ysidee

About EDEN

Driven by the ideal of a world where the rights of all children are respected, EDEN strives to contribute to the enjoyment by all children of their rights as set out in the regional and international legal instruments ratified by Senegal, notably the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child. It is committed to protecting them against “all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation, including sexual abuse”, while remaining faithful to Senegalese cultural values. EDEN is distinguished by its community-based approach and its concern to generate a sustainable impact with its interventions.

Read more about EDEN


A child safeguarding policy to strengthen its work

The organisation has recently developed a new Child Safeguarding Policy. EDEN already had a Child Protection Policy in place, which has been used as the basis for this new policy. The inclusion of a child safeguarding component now provides mechanisms and procedures to prevent threats and risks to child protection and to ensure the welfare and best interests of children. In addition, the Safeguarding Policy has the potential to make EDEN a safer organisation with more child-friendly interventions.


Photo credits : Anita Ysidee


Safeguarding of the child

« Child safeguarding is defined as the responsibility of organisations to ensure that their staff, activities and programmes do not harm children. This means that they do not put children at risk of harm and/or abuse, and that any child protection concerns in the communities where they operate are reported to the relevant authorities. »

Source : Keeping Children Safe Coalition– www.keepingchildrensafe.org.uk

Child safeguarding goes beyond protection. It includes everything an organisation needs to do to keep the children it comes into contact with (directly or indirectly) safe. It therefore implies a wider duty of care towards children than just maintaining their right to protection.

A collaborative process

In the process of developing EDEN's Safeguarding Children and Young People Policy, we collaboratively identified safeguarding risks by reflecting on the multifaceted nature of the impact that the organisation's staff, programmes and operations can have on children. Secondly, the roles and responsibilities of NGO members in relation to safeguarding were clarified and finally the procedure for reporting and managing incidents (both external and internal) was agreed.

Child safeguarding and risk prevention is now integrated into everything EDEN does, from recruiting staff and volunteers to selecting partners, running an activity and designing a programme.

A child-friendly version of the Policy has also been developed to enable children to better understand the content, but also to share it with their peers. Because at EDEN, nothing is done for children without children!

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Volunteer cooperation program funded by Global Affairs Canada.