By Raisa Okwaras
It is exactly twenty days to the general elections in Kenya. Even though children do not vote, activities from the general elections could affect them forever. Parents should therefore prioritize the safety of their children since as a nation, we are still dealing with Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from the 2007-2008 post-election violence.
Here are four tips that parents, guardians, and the whole community can use to promote the safety of children during the general elections in Kenya on August 9, 2022;
It is easier for war, chaos, and havoc to happen in crowded places during elections. It is important to educate your children on the dangers that could happen when they hang around crowded places. Go ahead and advise them to stay away from crowds. If they can, let them stay at home or in secure areas.
Truth is, you cannot control how things pan out during elections. You could put up all measures yet these may not be enough to keep your children safe. Whether or not you will spend time with your children during elections, let them memorize your phone number. They can call you if they got lost, making it easier for you to trace them and know when they are in danger.
Parents could lose their phones or their phones could go off during sex. It is therefore important to inform your children about emergency contact numbers to use in such cases. These include 999, 112, and 911.
We have heard cases of goons attacking homes and injuring or sometimes even killing children during elections. While we would want to bank on the government’s ability to keep citizens, including children safe, this may not often happen. It is why we encourage parents to burglar-proof their homes.
Such include strengthening the gates and enhancing the locks of all doors, ensuring that the alarms work, and children have self-protective tools.