As parents, there is no greater worry or concern than that of protecting a child. Most moms and dads work tirelessly to provide a healthy and safe home environment, but try as one might, a parent can’t protect his or her child every minute of the day. Kids will eventually leave the home to attend school, church or other organized activities, so it’s important that parents assess potential risks, have action plans in place and offer instruction to children on what to do in case of an emergency. Here are a few tips parents can use to keep kids safe when away from home.
Start with Respect
Teaching children to respect others sets them up for success and safety. It makes children more likely to listen to authority figures and pay attention to rules and procedures, while also lessening the risk of involvement in fights, bullying and even playground accidents. The most important thing to remember is that children mimic the behavior of their parents, so be sure to practice what you preach.
Understand School Safety Procedures
One of the most terrifying things facing parents these days is the rise of school shootings. No longer can a caregiver assume his or her child is safe at school. Instead, engage with teachers and administrators to discuss emergency practices and ensure the school has viable tactical response solutions in place. If plans are inadequate, organize fellow parents and lobby the school to make necessary changes.
Have an Emergency Plan
Natural disasters like earthquakes, tornados and hurricanes can cause untold damage and disrupt public transportation and other civil services. Talk to children about potential risks, preparedness measures and appropriate responses. This includes having evacuation plans and meeting spots in place, as well as emergency contacts should the child be separated from his or her parents.
Accidents and emergencies happen without notice, but knowing what to do when danger arises can go a long way in keeping a child safe. Employ these tips to help prepare and protect them.