Modern Slavery Statement
World Vision South Africa (WVSA) is a Non Profit Company devoted to improving the lives of the South Africa's most vulnerable children through child-focused relief, development and advocacy. WVSA works with children, families, communities, churches, other non-governmental organisations and national and international authorities and governments to achieve the best outcomes for children.
WVSA has a zero-tolerance stance on acts of modern slavery and human trafficking. It is pro-active in taking steps to prevent such acts occurring within its own supply chain and to ensure that on programmes it only partners with organisations that also observe appropriate ethical standards.
Structure, Activities and Supply Chain
WVSA is a NPC Registered in South Africa and a registered Public Benefit Organisation registered with the Tax Exemption Unit of the SARS. The Board of Directors of WVSA is responsible for the overall control of the organisation, its strategic direction and ensuring that it is properly managed.
WVSA is part of the World Vision Partnership (WV Partnership), a network of entities in a voluntary partnership which works in close to 100 countries providing services to people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. The WV Partnership comprises World Vision International (WVI) (a US-incorporated legal entity which provides international coordination of the WV Partnership) and its branch offices around the world, subsidiaries of WVI and other legal entities across the world which are not WVI subsidiaries (together the ‘WV Partnership entities’). WVSA forms part of the latter group.
WVSA raises funds for relief and development programmes from South African's and delivered with appropriate technical and other support provided by the WV Partnership. WVSA has a long-term relationship with other WV Partnership entities and there is a culture of transparency within the WV Partnership. All WV Partnership entities share the same zero-tolerance stance in relation to modern slavery and human trafficking and comply with the WV partnership policy documents described below.
Programme expenditure is sometimes made through non-World Vision partners where this is appropriate for effective implementation. This statement sets out the steps WVSA takes to ensure that third parties engaged in WVSA-funded programmes are also taking appropriate steps to mitigate the risk of modern slavery and human trafficking. This includes putting in place appropriate community level feedback and complaints mechanisms.
WVSA uses various suppliers to enable it to carry out its charitable activities, including in the areas of fundraising, marketing, IT, office facilities and employment. WWSA does not work directly with any suppliers in sectors which are particularly vulnerable to human trafficking such as construction, farming or hospitality. However, WWSA remains vigilant and has policies and procedures in place to mitigate the risk of human trafficking and modern slavery affecting its supply chain.
Policies and Procedures
WVSA’s internal policies include those listed below. In addition, WVSA also adopts the WV Partnership documents listed below. All of these have a role to play in tackling modern slavery.
a) WVSA Ethical Policy – ensures that through due diligence procedures due consideration is given to the track record of significant donors, partners or suppliers in areas including human and/or workers’ rights and use of bonded or child labour.
b) WVSA Code of Conduct Policy - emphasises WVSA’s commitment to conduct that is ethical and legal, that WVSA opposes illegal acts in any of its activities and that WVSA requires adherence by personnel to all applicable laws and organisational policies.
c) WVSA Risk Management Policy - ensures effective management of risks to which WVSA is exposed through its activities.
d) WVSA Whistleblowing Policy - refers to specific examples of misconduct, as well as illegal acts generally.
e) WVSA Contract policy and Contract Policy Implementation Guide - reiterates that WVSA has zero tolerance for human trafficking and provides that, where appropriate, counterparties may be required to explain what processes and policies they have in place to safeguard against such practices and contracts should reference and require compliance with the WVSA Safeguarding Policy.
Safeguarding Policy and Behaviour Protocols
The WVSA Safeguarding Policy prohibits all WVSA representatives from hiring children in any form of child labour (which we define as work that is mentally, physically, socially or morally dangerous or harmful to children or that interferes with their schooling). The policy is reviewed annually. The policy includes enhanced standards for reporting, prevention and managing responses to harm or abuse of beneficiaries and associates.
The Behaviour Protocols are also reviewed annually and state clearly what is unacceptable behaviour, including sexual abuse, other forms of abuse, humiliating, degrading or exploitative behaviour, the hiring of children for any form of child labour which includes ‘house help’. These Protocols have been communicated and are signed by employees, consultants, contractors and third parties.
WV Partnership Global Supply Chain Management Procurement Manual - requires consideration to be given to the principles of sustainable procurement, including relating to social impact, when making procurement decisions.
a) WV Partnership Guide to Humanitarian Standards - reminds staff involved in the implementation of programmes of the risk of trafficking and directs staff to use socially responsible businesses and local labour and ensure that procedures are in place to provide a safe working environment and appropriate remuneration.
b) The WV Partnership Whistleblowing procedure - WV Partnership uses a leading third-party provider of ethical reporting services to support the WV Partnership’s ‘whistleblowing’ mechanism. A confidential telephone hotline and on online reporting tool are available to staff, partners in the field, contractors and others wishing to report suspected illegal or unethical conduct by WV Partnership or its personnel. This includes reporting any concerns in relation to modern slavery and human trafficking which may be taking place within WVSA's business or supply chain. To make an online report, you can use the following link www.worldvision.ethicspoint.com.
WVSA has due diligence procedures in place to minimise the risk of WVSA engaging directly with an organisation involved in unethical practices or of such an organisation being involved in any programme funded by WVSA.
For all new WVSA suppliers, regardless of value, WVSA requires a supplier selection questionnaire to be completed. This requires WVSA staff to consider ethical purchasing as part of the selection of suppliers. For significant suppliers, an ethical due diligence checklist must be completed which requires staff to consider the track record of the supplier in areas including human and workers’ rights and use of bonded or child labour.
In the context of programmes, WVSA requires all non-World Vision partners it engages to complete a due diligence questionnaire. This questionnaire states that WVSA avoids any association with bonded or child labour, slavery and human trafficking and asks potential partners to confirm they have no association with such practices. In addition, partners are asked to provide WVSA with a copy of their ethical policies, including in relation to labour practices and human rights. Where a partner is going to be engaged by another WV Partnership entity in the programme country, WVSA requires that WV Partnership entity to carry out appropriate due diligence. WVSA staff review the results of this exercise to ensure that only entities which meet WVSA’s standards are involved in WVSA-funded programmes.
WVSA’s agreements with downstream partners on programmes, both WV Partnership entities and non-World Vision partners, include obligations relating to workers’ rights, including that the partner will not employ, enslave, engage or otherwise use forced labour, trafficked labour or child labour.
Training available to staff
WVSA now includes an induction training module that includes a section on modern slavery. This module has been made mandatory for all staff during the 2018/19 financial year. The module provides guidance on what modern slavery is, who is affected, what the signs are and what staff should do if they suspect that modern slavery is taking place.
Going forward, WVSA remains committed to keeping its policies, procedures and training under review and updating these as needed in order to maximise the contribution it makes to efforts to tackle modern slavery and human trafficking internationally.