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VIDEO: Three stranger danger tips to teach your children

VIDEO: Three stranger danger tips to teach your children

Published by Emma Carton at 9:49am 10th May 2018. (Updated at 10:14am 10th May 2018)

Advice is going out to parents after a schoolgirl was approached by a man, described by police as suspicious, near a play park in Plymouth.

The eight-year-old managed to escape unhurt, after the stranger put a hand over her mouth and waist.

She kicked and screamed for help after being targeted from behind in Leigham in broad daylight.

Devon and Cornwall Police are appealing for clues after it happened on Tuesday evening; read more.

These three tips from charity, End Abduction Now, are useful to teach your children when they are away from home.

What should I teach my children about stranger danger?

The NSPCC has this advice about keeping kids safe away from home:

  1. Be prepared: You know that one day the moment will come when your child will want to spread their wings so it makes sense for you both to start preparing for it.
  2. Talk about the dangers in advance: Whenever you're out with your child talk about how they think they can keep themselves safe. For example, you could ask them about how they know when it's safe to cross a road, what to do if a stranger starts talking to them or other children start to bully them.
  3. Set some rules: Let your child know where they can and can't go and explain why you're setting these rules. You should also tell them a definite time to come home.
  4. Build your child's confidence: It's probably a good idea to have a test run before you let them go out on their own for the very first time. Let them lead the way and only step in if they're putting themselves in danger.
  5. Make sure you're ready too: Don't be surprised if your child tries to persuade you that they'll be fine to go out alone or with an older brother or sister – but don't be pressurised either. You need to be sure that they'd know what to do if there was no one there to help them, for example if they argued with their brother or sister
  6. Keep talking: Even after they start going out on their own, keep discussing safety outside the home with them and remind them of the dangers. It's tempting to just leave them to it but you should still show you're interested in who they're spending their time with and what they're doing. If you do notice anything that doesn't seem quite right – like them being secretive or coming home with new belongings they can't explain – you should definitely look into the reasons why.

Ana Broad from the NSPCC said: "It really depends on the child but I think we would be advising parents to have those conversations, to open up those discussions about what would happen if they were approached, what would happen if they got lost or even being bullied by other children; what would they do, where would they go?"

You can read more advice from the NSPCC here or watch the worrying social experiment from the States...

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