As our older kids leave home to pursue their university careers, easing lockdown levels give our teenagers more freedom to meet with their friends, and schools’ reopening means more commuting as a family, the joys of watching our children grow up become entangled with the pressures and concerns around their safety. From home security to safety when travelling, family safety tips to protect our children’s lives are welcomed in our desire to look after our young ones as they stride along their journey to adulthood. The need for safe strategies revolving around family protection is especially important when considering the crime statistics regarding housebreaking, theft, and more as outlined by StatsSA.
We understand the safety concerns that South African parents have, and to combat the rising safety risks, we have created this list of helpful family safety tips to protect your children as they grow up and inevitably leave the nest.
Communicate with Your Children Openly and Regularly
Opening communication lines between you and your children is an essential safety strategy that provides families with physical and emotional support value. Families that encourage honest and transparent communication are more capable of responding to safety risks as parents are in the know and children are confident sharing information with their parents. Encourage your children to communicate openly and regularly through a family WhatsApp group, and remind them that open communication regarding their location, travel between friends’ houses, and activities is in their best safety interests and not a breach of privacy. Remind them that you were once in their shoes and that you are coming from a place of empathy and understanding of safety risks. Reaffirm that you have complete trust in them but do not trust strangers.
Teach Your Kids the Value of the ‘Buddy System’
As parents, we are well aware that there is safety in numbers. We must teach our children the importance of this tip whether it means going to the bathroom with a friend or avoiding driving alone. Encourage your children to find safety in a ‘buddy’ that they can trust, as extra eyes on the road or at a party will promote greater vigilance among your child and their circles of friends.
Show Your Children Your Home Security Features
Teach your children the ins and outs of your home security system, including how to activate and deactivate the alarm, access smart security cameras from a mobile app, and, but not limited to, how to trigger outdoor lighting. Giving your kids home security responsibilities will prepare them for emergencies and show them the importance of having these features when they own their own house as an adult. You should, additionally, teach them what to do in an emergency as they wait for the arrival of an armed response team such as triggering a panic button, moving to a secure room in the household, and hiding in a safe place until help arrives.
Clue Them Up on Emergency Support Systems
Besides home security systems, our children should be aware and capable of responding efficiently to security risks using emergency support systems. This involves encouraging your children to learn emergency contact numbers for the police and ambulance services and know the whereabouts of the nearest police station and hospital.
Family Safety Tips Involving Technology – Secura Family Package
Several safety technologies are available to parents and children, including on-the-go panic buttons and armed response apps. Secura’s geo-security platforms use Google Maps technology to provide a seamless location-based response solution, in which children or parents who trigger the panic buttons receive assistance from a reputable armed response team closest to their location.
Secura’s plans go above and beyond the industry standard in security solutions and, we now offer our Secura Family App and Family Vouchers to support families of up to 5 members. All family members on the plan receive access to our state-of-the-art geo-location security technologies, connection to our network of over 280 armed security companies across South Africa, security coverage in all nine provinces, and an average response time of approximately 5 minutes. This membership will help your kids stay safe when they are out with friends or leave home to pursue their university education in another city.
The tips outlined in this article centre around informing your children of the safety tools and practices accessible to them whether they are at home, boarding at a school far away, or are off to university. One cannot ignore the value of teaching your children the best safety and security practices. And, you can further their protection potential by coupling this knowledge with the affordable, reliable, and comprehensive Secura Family Packages.