RSH Consultants Series: Meet Oluchi, championing a SMART approach to safeguarding

Headshot of Oluchi Ihedoro

Oluchi Ihedoro is a dedicated consultant with 9 years of experience implementing development and humanitarian programs. She is passionate about capacity strengthening of individuals, organisations, private and public bodies to be better at what they do. Oluchi is available for work in Nigeria. She works in English, Igbo and some Hausa. Find out more about Oluchi in our Safeguarding Consultants Directory here.


Safeguarding Consultants Directory

The Safeguarding Consultants Directory is an online database of organisations and individuals that you can contract to support your safeguarding. The consultants featured on our Directory have experience from all over the world, rooted in the contexts that we work in. Between them, they speak 40 languages, and can offer services from policy development to investigation. Note that the Safeguarding Resource and Support Hub cannot cover the costs of contracting these consultants.

In this RSH blog series, we introduce some of our consultants to you. Feel free to ask questions related to the posts in the Comment box below!

RSH: What interests you most about safeguarding?

Accountability! I am very excited about the awareness that safeguarding is creating which makes everyone, irrespective of position or job description, to have a sense of responsibility in ensuring a safer work environment for all, and in seeing that people who we come in contact with are protected from harm. This has brought the issues of accountability and duty of care to life and put a check on power imbalance and misuse of power.

RSH: What are some recurring safeguarding questions/topics in your region?

Safeguarding is basically a new concept in the south-eastern and western parts of Nigeria where I currently work, hence questions around the following topics usually arise:

What does safeguarding really mean? How can one report a safeguarding breach while maintaining confidentiality? How can a low-capacity organisation handle cases of safeguarding breach and conduct investigations?

RSH: How do you approach these topics?Oluchi standing in front of a whiteboard presenting

I pay a lot of attention to strengthening the capacity of organisations to firstly let them understand the true meaning of safeguarding, and benefits they gain when committing to the “Do no harm” policy. Another important thing for me is guiding them towards ensuring survivor-centered approaches are applied throughout their safeguarding journey, and confidentiality is made priority. Lastly, I train them on case handling and also guide them in mapping out other available services which could help them conduct further necessary investigations.

RSH: What key skills and experience do you bring to safeguarding?

I'm a trained mentor on safeguarding and currently provide professional support to organisations especially national civil society organisations to improve their safeguarding policies and practices to protect people they work with from Sexual Exploitation, Abuse, Harassment and other forms of harms.

My area of specialty is monitoring, evaluation, accountability and learning, and this helps me apply a SMART approach when supporting organisations on safeguarding. The acronym SMART stands for "specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timebound." I achieve this by recognising every organisation’s peculiarity, areas of strengths and weaknesses, adopting relevant information and lessons, and providing results-based support, while recognising set timing.

I am well skilled and experienced in supporting organisations improve their culture towards safeguarding staff and the people they serve; through developing robust safeguarding policies and code of conduct and reviewing them appropriately, training staff, management and board of trustees/directors on safeguarding, and supporting organisations to put adequate systems and procedures in place to improve practices and compliance to their safeguarding commitments.

RSH: What languages do you work in?

I work fluently in English and Igbo languages, with little of Hausa.

RSH: Is there anything else you would like to tell us about yourself?

I so much cherish capacity strengthening hence I appreciate every opportunity that helps me improve on myself to better support others, both directly and indirectly.


Recent blogs

Join RSH mentor Oluchi Ihedoro as she shares in this vlog some safeguarding reflections and learnings gathered during an exchange meeting she facilitated for civil society organisations (CSOs) in Lagos, Nigeria. The Safeguarding RSH Nigeria Hub rounded off its first phase of the mentoring…
Prior to watching the What is safeguarding? animation by RSH, I confused safeguarding with protection, thinking safeguarding is about protecting beneficiaries from abuse and negligence inherent in the community. The animation helped explain in simple terms what safeguarding really means and the…
All of us can do our part in eliminating Violence against Women and Girls, Nigeria Hub Senior Advisor Dr. Eleanor Nwadinobi said on Click Naija FM on 10 December 2021. Dr. Nwadinobi discussed 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, and the mission of the RSH Nigeria Hub. Wearing orange…
What’s the difference between protection and safeguarding? What are some essential steps organisations need to take to become safer? Oge Chukwudozie, RSH Nigeria Hub National Associate has answered key questions on air with Kapital FM radio station. Watch the interview and understand the basics of…
Broadly speaking, safeguarding means preventing harm to people in development and humanitarian assistance delivery. Persons with disabilities are a major segment of the community, who are prone to many abuses and exploitation. Apart from sexual abuse and other harm, persons with disabilities…
With the new round of the RSH mentorship program kicking off in Nigeria, I’d like to tell you my experiences and what I have learnt from managing the mentorship program. The mentorship goes for 6 months and aims to support organisations to strengthen their safeguarding systems and practices. The…
Involving stakeholders in decision-making may inform safer programming, Farida Umar Jauro has learnt. Following the recent graduation of the RSH Nigeria Hub’s safeguarding mentorship programme, we asked mentee Farida about how her safeguarding knowledge has developed through the mentoring. RSH:…
RSH: What interests you most about safeguarding? The fact that it creates a healthy and safe environment for people to work. Safeguarding is about creating an environment where people are not only safe from harm, abuse, and exploitation but also where they have choice, control, and information to…
The RSH Nigeria Hub has recently had a roundtable meeting with leaders of civil society organisations (CSOs) and asked about the benefits of having a good safeguarding system. The participants also discussed challenges and their own role as leaders in strengthening and promoting safeguarding…
Semhal Getachew is the National Associate for RSH in Ethiopia. She has an academic background in law and social work and has over 18 years experience working on gender equality and women's rights in Ethiopia. Most of her work experience combines carrying out practice-based research to support…
What interests you most about safeguarding? I have a passion to advance and protect children and vulnerable adults from all forms of abuse and sexual exploitation. What are some recurring safeguarding questions/topics in your region? In consultancies I've undertaken, both inside and outside of…
Manu Samuel Seth is giving us an overview of the risk assessment and management tool developed by the RSH Nigeria team, and top tips on how to make the most of it. Download the risk assessment and management tool and the guidance on our page here. To view the recording and slides of the Live Q&…
RSH: What interests you most about safeguarding? The possibility of creating sustained behavioural change and an alternative way in envisioning the wider change in our ultra-conversative communities. RSH: What are some recurring safeguarding questions/topics in your region? We have a number of…
I’ve had some mentoring and coaching experience in the past, and I believe that for the benefit of the mentees, you have to put your feet in their shoes, especially when they are facing challenges. The Safeguarding Mentoring Training provided by the RSH has helped me to be more confident in…
Meet Lola Adeola-Oni, Chair of the safeguarding National Expert Board Oge Chukwudozie is the National Associate for the RSH Nigeria Hub and a safeguarding/protection professional, with over 15 years experience in the aid sector. During her career, Oge has worked in various thematic areas but her…
The RSH Nigeria mentors have a virtual monthly meeting to celebrate progress and problem solve safeguarding challenges. In April, mentor Julie Adegbesan described how a lack of dedicated donor funds made it difficult to access funds for safeguarding training. Listen to Julie ask mentor Oluchi…
Safeguarding is a journey and wherever you’re on it, there’s always room to pause, reflect, assess, improve, and repeat. The idea of the RSH mentorship programme is to support organisations whether they’re just starting out or improving their practices to efficiently safeguard the people they seek…