Tiger Trail Travel, long known for its commitment to responsible travel, is a ChildSafe Certified business.
After many months of training, policy updates, and procedural refinement, in March 2020 Tiger Trail completed their ChildSafe Certification. The ChildSafe organization strives to protect children around the world from abuse, exploitation, and unsafe environments. By completing the initial certification process and participating in ongoing training, Tiger Trail is doing its part to protect children.
Millions of children throughout the world live on the margins of society as a result of economic and social factors. This exposes them to harmful situations that may affect their safety and well-being. Abuses such as living on the streets, being trafficked, and child labor are just some of the issues children face on a daily basis. Children deserve to have their international rights recognized and fulfilled so that they can build positive, safe, and healthy futures.
The ChildSafe Movement, established in 2005 by international non-government organization (NGO) Friends-International, empowers everyone to protect children and youth from the many types of abuses and exploitation that children are at risk of globally. As a global movement, ChildSafe aims to create a world for children free from all forms of abuse and exploitation.
Tiger Trail Travel has become a ChildSafe Certified Business because we take very seriously the practice of protecting the most vulnerable populations. Children are often unable to advocate for themselves and we are committed to advocating for them.
Tiger Trail Travel has signed a commitment to honor ChildSafe’s 7 Standards to ensure all activities are protective of all children. This includes children as customers, children of our staff, and children in our community. Furthermore, they encourage all customers, partners, friends, and families to learn about ChildSafe’s 7 Tips for Travelers.
What are the ChildSafe 7 Standards Tiger Trail Adheres to?
ChildSafe provides the following guidelines for businesses to comply with. Tiger Trail recognizes and accepts the following 7 Standards for its Certification:
- The Company shall protect itself and its personnel with a strong Code of Conduct;
- The Company shall ensure hiring policies incorporate needs of the community, youth and parents;
- The Company shall ensure its products and/or services are child- friendly and protective;
- The Company shall ensure its Communication & Marketing respects the Rights of Children;
- The Company shall ensure its Corporate social responsibility programs are effectively protecting children and communities;
- The Company shall support relevant team members to become ChildSafe Agents;
- The Company shall support and promote ChildSafe Certified Agents and ChildSafe Businesses in their community, giving priority wherever possible to such Certified Agents or Businesses. The Company shall endeavour, as much as possible, to favour cooperation with such Certified Agents or Businesses over uncertified but potentially more profitable third-parties.
What are the ChildSafe 7 Tips for Travelers?
These 7 tips by ChildSafe help travelers understand what to do in specific situations. It’s easy to do your part for child protection by following these 7 easy tips.
- THINK! Children are not tourist attractions – let’s not treat them like they are. Children living or studying in schools, orphanages or slums shouldn’t be exposed to tourist visits. These places are not zoos. Imagine a bus full of foreigners visiting schools in your home country. Would you find this acceptable? Travel ChildSafe – Put child protection first and do not visit these places.
- THINK! Volunteering with children feels good but could be harmful – look for better ways to help them. Working with children in institutions such as orphanages is a job for local experts, not for travelers who are just passing through. Children deserve more than good intentions: they deserve experienced and skilled caretakers and teachers who know the local culture and language. Travel ChildSafe – Make sure your volunteering is a great experience and has the best impact possible. Do not work directly with children; instead, share your professional skills with local staff. You can also explore other ways to put your talents to use.
- THINK! Children pay a price for your generosity – don’t give to begging children. When you give money, food or gifts to begging children, you encourage them to continue begging, which prevents them from going to school and locks them into a cycle of poverty. Travel ChildSafe – There are better ways to support children and youth: use businesses with a social impact, such as training restaurants and shops, or donate to organizations supporting children and their families.
- THINK! Professionals know best – call them if a child needs help. Helping children directly can cause problems because you don’t know the local culture and laws. For instance, never take a child back to your hotel room – it’s dangerous for both you and the child. Travel ChildSafe – When you see a child in need, the best thing to do is to contact local professionals. Call a child protection hotline, contact a local organization or call the police. You won’t bother anyone – it is their job to check and help. Just call. You could save their life and give them a first chance to build their future.
- THINK! Sex with children is a crime – report child sex tourism. Sex tourism involving children is a devastating reality. It happens in hotels, in bars, etc. You may also be offered to have sex with children. Travel ChildSafe – When you see such a situation, don’t put yourself at risk. Call a child protection hotline, contact a local organization or call the police so immediate action can be taken to protect the child and investigate the situation.
- THINK! Children should not be at work instead of school – report child labor. Some children sell goods at tourist sites or offer their services as guides. Others are hired in tourism businesses like hotels or restaurants, and this is a problem when it hurts their education and development. Travel ChildSafe – Do not buy goods or use services offered by children. If you think that a business employs underage children and prevents them from going to school, call a child protection hotline, contact a local organization or call the police. They will check the child’s situation. Many children are just helping out their parents after school, but some may be exploited.
- THINK! Protect children – be a ChildSafe traveler. ChildSafe raises awareness about how you can help children during your trip. It also trains and certifies many businesses in the tourism industry (such as hotels, travel agencies, restaurants, and taxi services) to actively protect children. Travel ChildSafe – Use ChildSafe-certified businesses when planning and throughout your trip to avoid being involved in harmful situations for children. Every action described in these tips can make a big difference. Join the movement and together, let’s protect children!
Tiger Trail is very excited to continue training and assume this new responsibility as a ChildSafe Certified business in Laos. Please do not hesitate to contact us regarding our new partnership and look forward to affecting positive change with our new training.