Whether you’re an individual, small business or large company, the following tips are useful ways you can play a part in making tourism safer for vulnerable children. Learn what you can do.
Business practices and policies
People often think it’s difficult to protect children. But in fact, there are many simple and low cost things you can do in your business to better protect vulnerable children in tourism destinations.
A written client-facing policy makes it unequivocal that your company will not tolerate child abuse and exploitation. It should be simple, practical and achievable, with clear processes to prevent and respond to abuse. Most importantly, your policy should not just be words on paper – but a set of guidelines which are actively followed by all managers and staff. See a sample child protection policy.
Being a child safe business not only benefits the children you’re helping to protect, but also enables you to build a better business. Complete the following test to measure whether your business is taking sufficient action to prevent risk to children from abuse and exploitation in tourism. Take the test.
Voluntourism provides an opportunity for travellers to have a unique and rewarding experience, while simultaneously delivering benefits to communities that can have a lasting impact. However, while voluntourism may be well intended, the effects can be detrimental without the proper planning, management and monitoring.
In order to ensure the tremendous positive potential of this field, The International Ecotourism Society (TIES), Planeterra Foundation and an international advisory committee, have collaborated to develop a set of guidelines on Voluntourism. These guidelines outline best practices, including how to safeguard and promote the welfare of children. Read the guidelines.