- A. FRAMEWORK OF ACTION OF THE KINONIKO EKAV
A'1. Objectives and field of action of the Kinoniko EKAV
The Kinoniko EKAV (a Greek acronym for the Kinoniko "Hellenic Direct Assistance Cell" [in Greece, the "EKAV" is the National Direct Aid Center of the public health system]) is an independent social organization aiming at combating any form of social exclusion. The name "Kinoniko EKAV" refers to the concept of responding to emergencies, where socially marginalized people are literally traumatized in their social status.
The Kinoniko EKAV aims at reaching out and helping people who have lost the capacity to meet their basic needs by themselves (accommodation, food, health care, etc.), and often even the capacity to ask for help, being in deep desperation. Such groups are, for example, street children, homeless individuals, unaccompanied minor refugees, isolated women, refugees with disabilities, unemployed without support, etc. With Greece remaining in a prolonged crisis, their numbers are growing; social marginalization is now hitting people who belonged to the well-off social groups until recently.
The Kinoniko EKAV acts through mobile teams, providing immediate sanitary, psychological, and social care, on the very spot where people needing it are identified. The first objective is to create a human relationship, which is then used to lead gradually to social reintegration. In addition, the Kinoniko EKAV organizes hospitality spaces, where these people can find care and company, where they can socialize and re-claim their rights. In the hospitality spaces, counseling on medical, health, psychological, legal, etc. matters is provided.
The Kinoniko EKAV was founded in Greece by a group of physicians, health professionals, legal professionals, journalists, and social and political scientists, who already had a wealth of experience in the field of social action and volunteer humanitarian missions. The main motivation for its creation has been the need to contribute in tackling the social impact of the crisis, which is pushing more and more fellow citizens towards the margins of society.
The Kinoniko EKAV is an action organization, independent from any government, political party, or other political or religious body, and with direct reference to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as to the values of Freedom, Equality, and Solidarity, as set out in the Organization's Charter of Principles.
A'2. Scope of the Regulation of Operation and Procedures of the Kinoniko EKAV
The present Regulation of Operation and Procedures concerns all members and representatives of the Kinoniko EKAV, all employees of the Organization, as well as volunteers and friends, who participate in every action of the Kinoniko EKAV. The total of these persons is defined in the present text with the term "members of the Kinoniko EKAV".
This Regulation of Operation and Procedures reflects the expectation that all members of the Kinoniko EKAV participate and support the activities of the Organization, with honesty, integrity, independence and discretion, following transparent and effective procedures, according to the current legal framework, always in the best interestof the beneficiaries. This Regulation also contains specific guidelines and instructions regarding the various financial transactions, potential conflicts of interest that arise, the relations of members with third parties, the protection of beneficiaries and the confidentiality of information.
The Kinoniko EKAV regularly informs its members about the planned goals of the Organization, the relevant legal issues, the standards of conduct that are appropriate in each case, as well as the limits and prohibitions that are reduced to their duties. The members of the Kinoniko EKAV observe the personal and collective standards of ethical behavior, which are defined in this Regulation and act in such a way as not to cause harm or hinder the action of the Organization.
- B. CONTENTS OF THE REGULATION OF OPERATION AND PROCEDURES
The Regulation of Operation and Procedures of the Kinoniko EKAV includes the following nine sections, which describe the specific rules that must be observed by the members of the organisation.
Each section contains a brief introduction outlining the policy pursued in this field, as well as further information to help the implementation of this policy. This Regulation may not include all possible situations that may arise in the organisation’s activity but records the guidelines that help the people involved with the Koinoniko EKAV to make decisions based on the value identity of the Organization.
Any issue not explicitly mentioned in this Regulation may be discussed with the Legal or Financial Department of the Organization or its institutions, always within the framework of the objectives of the Kinoniko EKAV.
B.1. Compliance with laws, regulations and standards
The members of the Kinoniko EKAV comply with the applicable laws, regulations and standards, in order to always observe the highest legal, humanitarian and moral principles.
In particular, the representatives of the Kinoniko EKAV become familiar and comply with:
- The laws and regulations of the Hellenic Republic, as well as with the international regulations adopted by Greece, eg in the framework of the European Union, the UN, etc,
- The policy and procedures established by the institutions of the Kinoniko EKAV,
- The standards of conduct adopted in the context of Civil Society and its organizations.
B 2. Transparency and accountability of administrative procedures and financial transactions
All financial transactions, records and reports are in accordance with the terms and conditions agreed and the applicable financial and accounting standards. The Kinoniko EKAV has established standards and control procedures to ensure that all financial transactions comply with legal requirements and financial and accounting standards.
Among others and in particular:
- Accurate records of all financial transactions are kept. In no case resources or assets acquired are kept confidential or without prior registration.
- The ones responsible for each action of the Kinoniko EKAV are accountable to the Board of Directors of the Organization, or authorized for each expenditure, presenting the legal documents within the calendar month in which the expenditure was made.
- For the payments and transactions of the Organization with its staff and suppliers, bank accounts approved by the institutions of the Organization are used.
- The possible borrowing from banking institutions or from natural persons requires the previous decision of the Board of Directors of the Kinoniko EKAV, written in its meeting book.
- Ensure that all financial information submitted to sponsors, public or private, is accurate, complete, up-to-date and in accordance with the terms of the sponsorship or contract.
- Personal loans or advances to employees or consultants are not allowed, for any reason without the prior written approval of the Board of Directors.
B.3. Receipt of rewards, gifts and gratuities
Both in Greece and in other countries, the delivery and receipt of gifts is accompanied by a variety of rules, standards, ethics and customs. In some cases, gifts or services of small value may be given or received on transparency terms and without the explicit obligation of either party. All gifts and gratuities, whether given or received, must thebe in accordance with the laws, rules, regulations of the Kinoniko EKAV, as well as with the applicable local customs and traditions.
The following gifts or payments are not allowed in any case:
- Donations to citizens coming from resources of the Kinonoko EKAV.
- Payments to any government official, political candidate, party official or other person who may transfer the payment to one of the above persons.
- Gifts, services, reimbursement of expenses, access to any form of entertainment or for the members of the Kinoniko EKAV or their families, coming from suppliers of the Organization, if they are related to the procedures of the Procurement Code.
However, it is allowed to give or receive souvenirs or to participate in entertainment events or meals according to local customs and traditions, which do not exceed the value of € 50 per person and do not create an obligation for any party.
B.4. Conflict of interests
Conflict of interest arises when the decisions of a member of the Kinoniko EKAV may be influenced by personal or financial interests, commitments or obligations. The Organization systematically seeks to avoid the occurrence of such situations, the possibility of which, however, cannot be completely ruled out. For this reason, the cases where there may be a conflict of interest, concerning members of the Kinoniko EKAV, or their families, are notified in writing to the competent supervisor. In these cases, the members concerned do not take part in any decision related to the case.
The following are some examples of conflicts of interest that may arise:
- When a member of the Kinoniko EKAV, or a member of his family, has a serious financial interest or is associated with a body that contributes or seeks to contract with the Organization.
- When a member participates in a business group or works for another organization, the purposes of which are opposed to the purposes of the Kinoniko EKAV.
- When a member participates in a decision regarding the professional employment of a member of his family.
B.5. Security and protection of beneficiaries
The members of the Kinoniko EKAV have a duty to treat people and the communities served by the Organization, with dignity, respect to ensure their safety and protection.
The basic principles during the implementation of the Organization’s activity, in order to ensure the protection and safety of the beneficiaries, include, among others, the following instructions and rules:
- The members of the Organization always treat the beneficiaries with respect and avoid actions that may be misinterpreted or considered disrespectful or indiscriminate.
- Sexual exploitation or abuse by members of the Organization constitute major offenses and grounds for termination of any employment contract. The term "sexual exploitation" includes any form of acceptance of sexual services in exchange for money or other forms of compensation.
- Having sex with children (ie people under the age of 18) is prohibited regardless of the legal age of consent.
- Any provision of money, goods or services in exchange for sex, in any form, is prohibited. Any attempt to exchange assistance with the beneficiary is included.
- Sexual relations between members of the Organization and beneficiaries are generally to be avoided, as long as they are supported or at least potentially contain a fundamental inequality.
- The members of the Kinoniko EKAV create an environment that prevents sexual abuse or exploitation. The members of the Organization who are in charge of the implementation of the programs, take care of the support and maintenance of this environment.
- When it comes to photographing beneficiaries, there needs to be absolute respect for the people we photograph. Their consent is always sought, and the personality of their own and cultural values is respected. Children can be photographed but parents need to give their consent. Photographers should not give - as an incentive, for the photographs they seek - a fee to minors.
B.6. Information confidential or related to copyright
The Kinoniko EKAV has at its disposal information, in written or electronic form, that have been recorded by the Organization or have come to its knowledge, subject to confidentiality. The members of the Kinoniko EKAV take all the necessary measures so that this confidential information is not disclosed and is not used by any party.
Confidential information is considered to include:
- Information related to the beneficiaries and the programs of the Organization.
- Business or communication plans of the Organization.
- Personal information about the members of the Organization and their families, financial, medical or any other nature.
- Financial data and accounts related in any way to the Organization.
- Software and computer programs.
- Sponsor lists.
- Information about other organizations or from other organizations, related to the work of the Organization.
- Trade secret information.
- Confidential correspondence.
It is self-evident that the unauthorized disclosure of this information or their negligent use, may lead to the termination of the employment contract of the responsible member of the Kinoniko EKAV, as well as the initiation of legal actions against him.
B.7. Anti-fraud policy
The members of the Kinoniko EKAV abstain from any illegal or criminal act. They are particularly far from:
- Representation of false facts as true or concealment of true events due to which (representation or concealment) a third party is persuaded to act and thus causes damage to the property of himself or another (fraud).
- Any fraudulent or deceptive action.
- Embezzlement of funds, guarantees, commissions or other assets.
- Improper behavior in the management and accountability of money or financial transactions.
- Profiteering, as a result of the knowledge of confidential information related to the activities of the Kinoniko EKAV.
- Disclosure of confidential and exclusive information to third parties.
- Acceptance or search for material gain from contractors, suppliers and persons providing services or materials to the Kinoniko EKAV (except for the exceptions mentioned in paragraph B.3.).
- Deliberate destruction, removal or improper use of files, equipment and any similar or related irregularities.
B.8. Report a possible violation
The members of the Kinoniko EKAV immediately report any violation of this Regulation, as well as the Code of Conduct for Suppliers, which comes to their notice. In particular, any member of the Organization who discovers or has a reasonable suspicion of committing fraud (within the meaning of paragraph B.7.) or other serious act contrary to the principles of this Regulation (see eg paragraph B.5.), communicates with the responsible for the program or action in which it participates, in writing if necessary, maintaining the right to confidentiality of the information it conveys. The person in charge, in turn, informs the Board of Directors of the Kinoniko EKAV, through its chairman.
The Board of Directors of the Kinoniko EKAV judges, based on the data, the follow-up given to the case and informs the interested party personally and exclusively. The Board of Directors of the Kinoniko EKAV may decide to terminate the matter or, after hearing the interested party, to make a recommendation to him or to impose a disciplinary penalty within the Organization or to terminate his relationship with the interested party and / or to refer the matter to another competent authority. Information regarding the conduct of the investigation and the final decisions are not disclosed to third parties.
Any attempt at harassment or retaliation against a member who reported a breach of the Code in good faith will result in termination of the employment contract or any other relationship of the member who made the attempt with the Organization.
B.9. Final provisions
There is no condition of exemption of the Code of Values and Principles of the Kinoniko EKAV.
The observance of this Code and the compliance with its provisions are ensured by the written statement of the member of the Kinoniko EKAV, at the beginning of its participation in an action of the Organization, that became aware of the present and accepted it unconditionally. The Management of the Kinoniko EKAV undertakes the training of the members for the observance of the Regulation.
The above text, approved by the Board and the General Assembly of Social EKAB, is available to anyone interested through the website of the Organization.