Caroline Fernandez: Activity Mummy


Street And Bully-Proofing Your Child

Strategies To Keep Them Safe

In the wake of the abduction (and murder) of grade 3 student Tori Stafford and just as a new documentary "Bully" is set to release to movie theatres, it is now timelier than ever to talk street and bully-proofing with your kids.

I am no expert. 

However, I am a parent.  And these are my casual-dinner-party-conversation-strategies to keep kids safe.


 Kids don't open the door.  Not to a delivery man.  Not to the newspaper lady.  Grown-ups answer the door.

 Kids don't talk to strangers.  You don't take candy.  You don't help anyone look for a lost dog.  You don't go to a car because they are giving away an ipad.

 Kids don't walk alone.  You can walk in front, behind, over to the side, heck even backwards if you want...but not alone.

 Kids know who picks them up.  When I was soon-to-give-birth, we told the kids who was approved to pick them up from school and/or activities.  #1 parent.  #2 grandparent.  #3 our trusted friend.  No one else.  Even if you think you know them.


 You can always talk to me. Don't be afraid. Or embarassed. 

 Intimidation isn't cool.  No one should make you fearful whether at school, on a team or in an activity. Talk to the person in charge.  And then talk to me.

 Don't be a fan of a bully.  Don't cheer a bully on.  Have the courage to help the victim by finding a grown up to step in. 

 Your body—your space.  No one (adult or child) should touch your private parts.  No one should physically harm you. 

My daughter keeps telling me that all her friends have Facebook accounts and that she wants one too. 

I researched: What is the minimum age requirement for Facebook?

Answer: 13 years old. 

I think one of the best strategies for a parent to keep their kids safe is to be informed. Do your research. Keep in-the-know of what's going on at school and in the 'hood. Watch for behaviour changes in your children (a sign something is night right). Talk to your kids.

And be your child's best advocate.  Always.