Keeping children safe during holidays

By Sandra Kyalitesa

Added 6th September 2019 12:00 PM

The Permanent Secretary Ministry of Education and Sports, Alex Kakooza says parents should be sure of the safety of children during holidays because they can be abused, and introduced to dangerous habits.

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Farming is one of those things you can introduce your children to this holiday season (File Photo)

The Permanent Secretary Ministry of Education and Sports, Alex Kakooza says parents should be sure of the safety of children during holidays because they can be abused, and introduced to dangerous habits.


Children returned back home from holidays but how are parents managing them, when they also have to work in order to feed them, pay for the next term and all other necessities.

For most children, home is a place to have adventure and to play. However home is also the most commonplace for children to be injured.

It is therefore important as a parent or guardian to try and make sure that the home environment is as safe as possible to avoid injuries and other abuses. Most injuries are predictable and preventable.

The Permanent Secretary Ministry of Education and Sports, Alex Kakooza says parents should be sure of the safety of children during holidays because they can be abused, and introduced to dangerous habits.

“When children are in school we say they are safe and when they are back home they are given circulars, ‘Indicating that children should be safe in the holidays’, so it is the responsibility of every person at home to take good care of children” Kakooza says.

According to Raising Children Network, home safety is about supervising your child, creating a safe environment and teaching your child about what is safe and what’s not.

But a child can be kept safe from falls, burns, poisoning, drowning, strangulation and suffocation by finding out what the risks are, and then preventing, removing or avoiding them. The reality remains that children can still tumble and end up falling, that’s why supervision is one of the keys to child safety at home.

Dr.  Sabrina Kitaka, a pediatrician adds that supervision of children in the holidays should be maximised especially during sporting activities like swimming, climbing, performing home chores such as bathing, cleaning, and cooking.

 ports instills discipline and keeps the children active and healthy ile photo Sports instills discipline and keeps the children active and healthy (File photo)

Communicate with children

Crescent Mwebaze, a child counselor and Adolescent Mental Health Supervisor at Strong Minds advises parents that when communicating with young ones, they should equate themselves to the level of these children.

Mwebaze adds that parents should involve their children in family planning; this will help to win the children’s trust.

 “Parents talk to your children, involve them in every activity, this will build the trust and they will open up to you about fears,” Mwebaze adds. He says that a way forward of how to protect this child will be found by the parent if a child opens up.

 However, Mwebaze advises that when communicating with these children quarreling and commanding languages should be avoided because they (children) will end up hiding information from the parent. “Congratulate them for having completed the term whatever performance they present, ask them what led to that performance, if possible surprise them, for instance, take them to dinner,” Mwebaze advises.

This creates a bond of love and memories for the child making it easier for the parent to offer safety to him or her (child).

Additionally, Kitaka urges parents to ensure to speak with their children for it shows them how they are loved and cared about.

“Teens may deny parental love and support just because they are going through a transition period from childhood to adulthood, but parents should be consistent with love and patience while speaking to them,” Kitaka cautions.

Make children busy                

Luke Oweyesigire Kampala Metropolitan Spokesperson advises parents to make their children busy because it’s where they expect them to be safe more than if they keep moving around with nothing to do.

This is what Trudy Nabwire, 34, a mother of four embarked on for she ensures that in holidays she instructs her children on house chores and she supervises them daily. And on a weekend, she ensures that she is at home to monitor all her children.

 “Now that the holidays have begun, I gave my maid consent to visit her relatives, and the oldest son is 16,so his role is to dig and clean the compound, so I don’t expect to see any grass, then the other three children wash, mope, cook ,then they find time to also read in the holidays,” Nabwire explains.

Nabwire adds that it is this keeping them busy that makes her children occupied that they cannot think of anything harmful.

 Nabwire ensures that all the electricity cables are wired and supervised by a credited company. She adds that on weekends she is at home with her children.

Barbra Kaitesi, 45, a mother of three says that all her children work with her in her business, and when they return home, they help the maid with unfinished house chores.

"I hired my maid when my kids were so young, so they have grown up with her, in the holidays they work with her, and on weekends I give her permission to relax without any work,” Kaitesi adds.

Respect caregivers                  

Samalie Kisakye, a Child Care Practitioner says In the presence of children at least parents should respect caregivers so that they (children) also respect them. It will be hard to find that caregivers have tortured a child in the absence of a parent.

“if you are working parent, in holidays hire a person who has passion for children this will enable them(children)have an interesting holiday because the caregiver will be balancing time for television, reading and also playtime”, Kisakye advises.

Kitaka adds that children below five years are always at risk of non-accidental injury; caution should be observed among those people they have left them with.

Additionally, Oweyesigire says that since even those children in boarding schools are at home, parents should strengthen their security by ensuring that they are protected.

Do reseearch

Kisakye instructs parents to allow their children to read from home for its in coaching that children find themselves being raped, murdered, by those who claim to be holiday teachers., if it’s impossible to read from home, then let them (parents) take extra research on the people who are to coach their children.

In addition, Kisakye advises parents to warn their children not to talk to strangers, even accepting gifts from them.


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