Chernobyl Children’s Project (UK) groups are required to adhere closely to these guidelines in order to determine the suitability of host families prior to placing children with them, and to provide maximum possible safeguards for the children during their stay. All Host Families must be given a copy of this document and also ‘Guidelines for Host Families’
1. Interested parents should be encouraged and expected to attend group meetings so that they understand what we are trying to achieve. At least one parent from each family should attend three meetings before the children’s visit, and both parents should be known to the rest of the group.
2. All homes must receive a visit from two members of the group, or people known to the group. Ideally, they should both have some relevant experience in social work or health care. In the event of concern about a family the problem should be discussed with the group co-ordinator and the committee or steering group, if the group has one. It is better to err on the side of caution and not to put children with a family about whom there are any doubts. The National Co-ordinator or one of the Trustees should be consulted in cases where the group is uncertain of the best course of action. All members of the group should be visited, including the co-ordinator.
3. All families must be given the Host Family Guidelines and asked to sign an Application and Agreement form. References given on this form should be taken up, except for families well known to the group. At the earliest possible date, all adults (including those who will not host but will be closely involved with the children) must complete a Criminal Records Bureau Disclosure Form. This applies to all children 16 years and over. Where new host parents already have an Enhanced Disclosure, issued by another organisation, this will not be accepted, and a new CRB form will need to be applied for through CCP UK. CRB forms for all host family members and volunteers must be re-submitted for clearance every year thereafter.
4. The children must always stay in pairs (except in unavoidable circumstances where one of the children does not arrive, due to illness). If any child appears to be unhappy with a family, the reasons must be investigated immediately, and the child moved to another family if the problem cannot be resolved.
5. The children should be visited in their homes by the interpreter within three or four days of their arrival The interpreter should endeavour to speak to each child every day, (especially during the first few days of the visit and after the changeover) either on an outing, a visit to the home or by telephone. The children must have the telephone number of the interpreter so they can ring at any time.
6. The children must meet regularly for excursions or activities – at least three times a week.
7. Families are not allowed to take children away from the area for more than a couple of days, and even then only when the interpreter and the group co-ordinator have established that the children are settled and are happy.