Photo: The Centre’s project team during the on-site baseline assessment at a palm oil plantation in Indonesia in May 2022.
Since 2021, The Centre has been working with Wilmar International and BSR to test their Child Protection Implementation Manual via a pilot programme. The purpose of the pilot is to test and refine the manual’s practical applicability, build supplier capacity to address child protection issues in selected palm oil estates in Indonesia and Malaysia, and share key lessons learned with Wilmar’s supplier base in both countries. The Centre’s current role is to test the manual via a series of supplier workshops targeting actors in Indonesia’s palm oil plantations.
To this end, The Centre recently completed a baseline assessment in a palm oil plantation in Central Kalimantan, Indonesia from May 23-25, 2022. The objective of the assessment was to assess where the company stands in terms of its capacities in protecting children in the pilot sites, identify the risk factors that contribute to the vulnerability of children in the pilot sites, and provide recommendations to address the gaps identified. The assessment also looked at how the manual can be used to close the gaps in terms of policies, procedures and practices.
Photo: children living near the palm oil plantations get a voice by taking part in a The Centre-led focus group discussion.
The baseline assessment included document/policy review, facility walkthrough and observation, and Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) with plantation management, field supervisors, plantation workers, workers’ children, community leaders, teachers, creche's caretakers, gender committee; aimed at obtaining their input on the implementation of child rights related initiatives and mechanisms at the plantation. All in all, over 32 different stakeholders were interviewed and provided inputs.
Findings from this baseline assessment will help The Centre’s team to identify the most suitable and relevant training programmes and interventions to strengthen child rights on palm oil plantations going forward using the child protection manual as a guiding tool.
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