Summer Safety Tips for Children

written by Lisa Vasquez, NHPHA Communications Committee Chair

It has been a different school year for children. Many children will remember this year as they were moved from the school buildings and had to learn from home. Summer is almost here, and there is still uncertainty about what September will look like and if children will be returning to school. This summer will also look different for children. As they social distance and as restrictions ease, they might reintegrate into their social groups with some restrictions. There is so much going on in our country at this time that we have to consider our children’s mental health as the priority.

Things to remember to keep children safe during the summer:

  • Keep the lines of communication open. Talk about your day’s activities and create a communication plan in case of an emergency.
  • Create a time during your day where you have a feelings check-in. With so much on the news and social medial platforms it is important to check in emotionally with children. So much of what is happening needs context.
  • Talk to children about how you are keeping them safe.
  • Give children easily digestible information in small portions and give them time to ask questions.
  • Be mentally present when children want to have conversations about events on the news or their feelings.
  • Let your children know it is okay to ask for help when they are feeling down.
  • Give children actionable items (such as "Wash your hands," "cover your sneeze and cough," chores, and routines).
  • Normalize talking about feelings.

Additionally, there are many resources available for parents:

  • Bureau of Student Wellness – nhlearnsremotely.com
  • CADY (Communities for Alcohol and Drug-free Youth) – Follow on Facebook for parent support webinars
  • Makin' It Happen – Follow on Facebook for” I’m Ok, are You Ok?” Series
  • Beyond Influence – Follow on Facebook for Weekly Parent Support Talk Tuesdays at 2:30PM
  • Reach out to your local family resource center. You can call 211 to get their contact information.

"We are in this together" isn’t just a slogan. All parents across the state and the country are navigating remote learning and the uncertainty of what comes next. If you feel overwhelmed, you are not alone. Reach out to your support network or link to the above resources. We will get through this, but remember that it’s always OK to ask for help.

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