Whether you are a member of staff (at Tearfund or a partner organisation), a beneficiary, or a member of the public, the following guidance will help you report any concerns you may have about the behaviour of Tearfund staff or representatives.
Tearfund is committed to promoting the security and wellbeing of beneficiaries, volunteers and staff. In particular we are also committed to the safety, security and dignity of children, along with adults who are vulnerable and/or at risk.
Staff and representatives must ensure that their behaviour promotes and allows children and vulnerable adults/adults at risk to live free from:
- harm and abuse - including physical, sexual (including sexual harassment) and emotional (including the abuse of power/trust and any form of coercion)
- physical and sexual exploitation
- human trafficking
Tearfund staff and representatives are required to understand the importance of safeguarding children and vulnerable adults/adults at risk by:
- upholding the dignity and respect of children and vulnerable adults/adults at risk
- taking preventative steps to ensure a safe environment for children and vulnerable adults/adults at risk
- responding quickly and appropriately to concerns raised
Any allegation or concern regarding the abuse of a child or a vulnerable adult/adult at risk must be treated seriously and be reported within 24 hours of having been made aware of the issue/concern. A concern can arise when abusive behaviour is observed or suspected, when an allegation is made or disclosed, or where there are indicators (signs and symptoms) of suspected abuse on the victim.
There are two ways to report a concern:
- Email directly to email@example.com
- Use our 24/7 Safecall service – both telephone and email – details can be found below. Please use the relevant local Safecall telephone number if you are concerned that the alleged victim is in imminent danger.
All calls and emails to Safecall are treated in complete confidence by an independent team, who will not disclose your name to Tearfund without your explicit permission. If you telephone, and wish to remain anonymous, Safecall will make follow up arrangements with you.
All concerns raised or reported with Safecall will be shared with Tearfund at a senior executive level, and will be investigated thoroughly. Action will be taken in line with our policies.
When someone discovers information which they believe shows serious malpractice, unacceptable behaviours, practices or wrongdoing by Tearfund staff and representatives – including staff working for our partners, it is essential that the individual is able to report concerns internally without fear of reprisal, and independent of immediate line management.
The list below shows the types of malpractice or wrongdoing that should be reported. However this is not an exhaustive list:
- Fraud/theft or bribery has, will or is likely to take place.
- A person has, will or is likely to abuse or exploit a child or vulnerable adult/adult at risk - see the Safeguarding section above for further details.
- A person has, will or is likely to engage in or facilitate the human trafficking of another person.
- Any other criminal or illegal activity has, will or is likely to take place.
- The organisation – or a person within the organisation – has, will or is likely to engage in unacceptable fundraising practices.
- A person has, will or is likely to endanger the health and safety of another person or the environment.
- A person has, will or is likely to corrupt/abuse an organisational practice/procedure – e.g. within an operational programme, HR, Finance or Logistics.
- A person has, will or is likely to do something illegal e.g. breach of contract, negligence, damage/misuse company property.
- A person has, will or is likely to victimise another person – e.g. by using their position or authority within Tearfund to abuse/victimise another person.
- A person has, will or is likely to behave in a way that is not in line with Tearfund’s expected behaviours
If you have any concerns or allegations about the conduct of a Tearfund staff member or representative, including partner staff, please contact our whistleblowing channel where all comments will be dealt with in confidence. Issues will be investigated and action taken in line with Tearfund’s policies.
Phone: +44 (0)20 3906 3746
If the concern is about a member of the Board or the Executive Team, then the following email address must be used: firstname.lastname@example.org
We would also like to hear from you if you:
- have broader questions or concerns about Tearfund’s work or ethos
- are unhappy about an interaction you have had with anyone from, or connected to, Tearfund (apart from issues of Safeguarding or Whistleblowing, which are covered above)
In these instances we are still keen to hear from you. Please use the process outlined in our Supporter Charter in the section Making a Complaint. We want you to tell us where we could be falling short of the high standards we have set for ourselves.