Defence Team Parenting Series: Empowering and protecting our children through the easing of COVID-19 Restrictions

July 6, 2020 - Defence Stories

Outdoor walk wearing a mask.
Caption

Face masks are mandatory in certain places. Send your children prepared with a hand sanitizer and a mask so they are equipped with the tools they need to stay safe. 

This is the third article in a series for all Defence Team members to provide tips and continued support on parenting during COVID-19. Hang in there – you got this!

With nicer weather upon us and the easing of certain COVID-19 restrictions, it is easy to forget that we are still in the midst of a pandemic. Swimming, beach days, ice cream dates; they all sound so exciting! However, it is important to ensure our youth are equipped with information on how to keep themselves and others safe and healthy. Whether younger children are attending a day camp, your teenagers are spending more time with friends, or even when preparing them for the eventual return to school, you want to be confident in your child’s ability to stay safe.

Here are some helpful things you can do when talking to your children about COVID-19:

  • Remind them of the precautions that still need to be taken and provide them the tools required. We cannot forget that frequent hand washing is a must, social distancing is still key, and face masks are mandatory in certain places. Send your children prepared with a hand sanitizer and a mask so they are equipped with the tools they need to stay safe. This Awareness Resources section contains downloadable “How-To” infographics which you can review with your children. “How to safely use a non-medical mask” is one of the skills you can review and practice together.
  • Provide your children with resources, and encourage them to assume some responsibility. It is key to educate them regarding public health measures. There is benefit in providing older children resources dedicated specifically for their age group where they can explore information related to their role and responsibility during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 resources for youth and students.
  • Encourage them to connect with friends. It can be nerve-wracking to think about letting your children socialize during this time, but spending time with friends is a very positive thing for their mental health! These social connections support their wellbeing; however, establish with your children how to do so in a safe way beforehand. This can include activities such as going for bike rides or having a backyard get-together at a safe 2 metres distance.

For now, the health and safety restrictions around COVID-19 are easing. Each new phase of this pandemic will be a learning curve for us all. Be patient with yourself and your children as we all tackle these new challenges together. Stay up-to-date on your Provincial and Territorial COVID-19 Guidelines (scroll down the webpage and use the drop-down menu for your province or territory) to remain healthy and safe!

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