14 ways to ensure your child is safe this festive season

Children running barefoot in a park/ iStock

The festive season can be a stressful time for many parents when it comes to ensuring their children’s safety.

Because schools will be closed, it means your children will have plenty of time on their hands. Keeping them entertained might mean allowing them to go play with their friends in the park, taking them to the shopping mall with you or allowing them to go visit friends and family members. Sadly, this means you won’t be able to keep an eye on them all the time.

Reports of missing children usually increases during the festive season and children are also exposed to a lot of new people during parties, festivals, and family gatherings.

Here are tips to help you keep your child safe during this time.

– Don’t leave your children in the car, even if you are going somewhere for just a few minutes.

– When driving, always make sure your children are buckled up.

– Ensure your car is always on child lock.

–  Teach your children their home address, your cell phone number, your name and emergency
contact numbers.

– Know where your child is always, what they are wearing, and always have a recent photo of

– Talk to your kids before a family outing about what is acceptable when it comes to how family
members interact with them. Let them know no one can touch them inappropriately or make
any sexual comments.

– Don’t allow children to leave your sight or be in a place where you can’t see them.

– Don’t allow your children to play alone in the street, no matter how safe the street seems.

–  Teach your children that if they get lost in the shopping mall, they shouldn’t go looking for
you by themselves.

–  Don’t leave your children to play in public areas without supervision of an adult you trust.

– If your child goes for a sleepover, ensure you know their friend’s family, their cell phone number and address. When you drop them off, take the time to introduce yourself to the parents, and if you’re not comfortable with the situation, you have every right to take your child home instead.

– If your child has a cell phone, know who your child is talking to, especially on social media.

– Teach your children that they shouldn’t accept gifts from strangers.

– Teach your child that they must not accept drinks, money or food from strangers.

ALSO READ: Expert advice on how to ensure your child is safe in public

Image courtesy of iStock/ monkeybusinessimages