“We listen to children” say many organisations who work with children, especially schools. But do we really seek out their voices, or even disclosures, in a way that they feel free to speak? Child Wise has spent three decades listening to children in Australia, and many of them tell us that asking them ‘right’ in an un-intimidating forum, is key. Mind Of My Own has spent years creating just the right questions in just the right forum, with the co-development of children all over the world, so that children in any organisation can use any device to speak to any aspect of their safety, without fear or favour.
The new partnership between Child Wise and UK-based Mind Of My Own aims to work with these companies to establish methods for involved youth to be active, vocal, and confident participants in any organisation they live, work or play. In addition, they seek to develop age-appropriate mechanisms for them to provide feedback.
With multiple award-winning Mind Of My Own providing the digital participation tools required to engage and consult with the organisation’s youth, Child Wise builds the safeguarding infrastructure required to respond. This ensures organisations are not only compliant with legislation, but also have a framework of policies, procedures, and strategies to create a genuinely child safe and inclusive culture.
Their efforts align with the National Child Protection Week (NCPW) theme of ‘Every child, in every community, needs a fair go’. Taking place from 5th to 11th September 2021, this year’s NCPW is focused on treating all of Australia’s children fairly, by making sure every family and community has what kids need to thrive and be healthy.
Child Wise Managing Director, Natalie Siegel-Brown, says “It has become increasingly important for organisations to make child safety a priority and that all turns on how much VOICE we give children. Do we treat them as equals? Do we just rely on them to tell when something is wrong? Or do we genuinely create the opportunities for them to speak to how the organisation makes them feel? Many organisations think they do this, but they don’t. Encouraging the participation of children is one of the best ways to gather information to facilitate this goal. Digital participation tools help organisations receive organic, uncontrived, and authentic feedback from a wide range of children and young people. They play a crucial role in advancing universal children’s rights, promoting wellbeing and safeguarding for those employed or impacted by the organisation.
Non-compliance with child safe policies and legislation can have dire consequences on an organisation’s credibility and reputation.”
Mind Of My Own Director Jill Thorburn adds “We believe young people should always be able to participate fully in their lives and it should be easy for them to speak up any time they want. But this isn’t possible at every organisation where youth are involved.
By working with Child Wise, we aim to educate companies on ways to engage and consult with children and young people that’s both efficient and responsive to the organisation’s needs.”
For more information about Child Wise and Mind Of My Own’s partnership, visit Digital Participation Tools for Children & Young People - Child Wise
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Child Wise was the first Australian organisation to develop safeguarding standards to evaluate and strengthen child safety practice.
In 2018, they welcomed the introduction of the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations, which reflects their pioneering work.
Mind Of My Own creates fully accessible apps that provide a unique digital solution to advancing universal children’s rights. It is the only digital tool that comprehensively supports Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).
Mind Of My Own has won multiple awards, including Best British Tech Pioneer in the iESE public sector transformation awards; winner in the Children and Young People Now awards; winner in the Tech 4 Good awards; and Best Public Sector Product in the ScotlandIS awards.