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Individual Protection Referrals in Ukraine - Minimum Standards

Protection Cluster
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Key terms

1. What is a referral?

A referral is the process of directing an individual or a household to another service provider because they require further action to meet an identified need, which is beyond the expertise or scope of the current service provider.

2. What is a Protection referral?

A Protection referral is a referral to a Protection service. The rest of this document focuses on Protection referrals.

This document does not cover GBV Referrals.

3. What is the difference between a Protection re-direction, a referral and counselling?

A referral involves at least two humanitarian staff getting in contact with each other, and transferring the contact details of a person in need of a service. Providing information on services, or giving the hotline number of an organization, to a person in need of a service, without connecting to another humanitarian staff, is not a referral. This is referred to as counselling.

A Protection referral involves an assessment of the person’s Protection need, which is sensitive. It must be conducted by a well-trained technical specialist in Protection. This is to avoid causing harm to the person, and ensure that people with the right skill-set can safely support the person in accessing the Protection service that they need.

A Protection re-direction is only a transfer of the person’s basic information: their name, location and phone number. No further assessment on the actual nature of the Protection need is conducted. Nontechnical specialists in Protection should re-direct people to technical specialists in Protection, as per the information found on the Service Mapping on Protection services. The re-direction should be done by phone, not using the Inter-Agency Referral Form, as only basic information should be communicated. The technical specialist in Protection who receives the re-direction will then proceed themselves to the referral if necessary.

4. Who are the key actors involved in the referral process?

The key actors in a Protection referral are: the sender of the referral , that is, the person/agency who was in contact with a person in need of services and is referring them to another agency; the receiver of the referral , which is the agency that is contacted to support with service provision; and the person in need of a service , who is in contact with both the sender of the referral, and the receiver of the referral.