A long time ago, when Rafiki Mwema first opened its doors and took vulnerable and abused girls into our house, we worked on a safeguarding policy to protect our vulnerable children. We sought advice and guidance and adopted a policy that we have adhered to ever since. We have never shared a picture and a story of a girl, where there is any chance that her identity could be established. We work with our children always; about information we share and information we don’t. Funnily enough, all our children love that the world knows they have had a really tough time, and yet still love and support them, as you all do.
We recently spent time addressing our Safeguarding Policy, something we do every year, and decided that we would no longer share our children’s given names, even to their sponsors. Our family all know their pseudo names and are delighted to receive letters and post addressed to their ‘Rafiki name’. We will also make the assumption that people know the reasons that our children are in our family, and with this in mind, we will never share a child’s ‘story’ or information on anything that happened to them and we will instead share their characteristics and tell you about who they are and what their likes and dislikes are.
This is not at all about not trusting our beautiful sponsors with the children’s stories, but more about continuing to protect their online identity. If you already have access to their names and stories, we know you will continue to honour and respect them, exactly as you have always done.
At Rafiki Mwema we are constantly visiting and evaluating our policies and will always be looking at ways we safely share information, at the same time let you know just how much we love and are thankful for all you do.