Childcare policy

Oyster has strict policies in place about the ethos and practices of the organisations we work with. We also ensure that our participants are appropriately vetted and able to do the job.

Assessing the project

  • We thoroughly assess each project to ensure that children are well cared for and supported by full-time members of staff.
  • We only work with properly regulated orphanages and family homes.
  • We only send participants to a project if it will genuinely benefit the children and not create a burden to staff.
  • We expect clear child protection policies to be in place.

Checking and preparing participants

  • We interview every participant to make sure that they have the right personality and motivation to work with children.
  • We check that participants are physically and mentally up to the challenges of child care work.
  • Participants working with children are expected to have prior experience in a relevant field.
  • All participants working with vulnerable children must be DBS or police checked.
  • Participants working with children must volunteer for a minimum of 4 weeks. Longer stays are encouraged.
  • Participants are given thorough preparation and a code of conduct before departure, so that they know exactly what to expect. This includes:
    • Information about the organisation they will be joining and the needs of its children
    • Their role and typical daily activities
    • Who they will be working with and supported by
    • Rules and regulations relevant to their project and child protection (including issues such as photographing children)
    • Their orientation and induction
    • Complaints and concerns procedure
  • Briefing and training is also provided on arrival.
  • A member of staff will be appointed as the participant point of contact. There will also be ongoing local support from Oyster.