How to ensure the safety of the children in your neighbourhood

According to a report released in 2014 by the Missing Persons Bureau, a child goes missing every five hours in South Africa. The reasons range from kidnapping to human trafficking. So, how do you prevent this from happening to your child/children or those living in your neighbourhood? Here are our top tips to help reduce the risk of this happening in your suburb.

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Prepare your children

  • Let’s face it; it’s not possible to be by your child/children’s side every minute of the day. Prepare your child/children to navigate safely through the day without you, as well as how to avoid placing themselves in dangerous situations.
  • As soon as it is possible, teach your child his/her full name, home address and the name of their school. Knowing this information will help them in the unfortunate situation in which they become lost.
  • Teach them to remember important emergency numbers.
  • Take your child on a tour of the neighbourhood. This way, they will be able to learn about their surroundings while meeting others in the neighbourhood. Show your child/children landmarks in the area, including their proximity to home.
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Create rules for your children

Create rules that will ensure the safety of your child/children. The following rules should be included:

  • Always know where your child is and with who.
  • If they are regularly at home alone at home, ensure that they know not to open doors for anybody, remember to lock the doors and not tell anyone that they are home alone.
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Know your neighbourhood

Aside from your child learning about their surroundings and meeting new friends in the neighbourhood, ensure that you know as much as possible about the area you live in. This includes meeting your neighbours and the parents of your child/children’s friends.

Pick a safe house

The majority of the time, you are unable to predict harmful situations. If there are not any relatives or people you trust who live close to your home, choose a neighbour that you trust for your child/children to go to in case of an emergency.

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Consider Neighbourhood watch

Lastly, consider a community security scheme. By having a one in place, you and your neighbours can rest assured knowing that there is a dedicated security service in the area. A community security scheme will give you peace of mind knowing that there are professionals in your area who secure your neighbourhood.

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By applying these safety steps, you are improving the environment for your child/children including those living in the neighbourhood.

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