Talking about COVID-19 COVID-19 PARENTING 6 Be willing to talk. They will already have heard something. Silence and secrets do not protect our children. Honesty and openness do. Think about how much they will understand. You know them best.
Be open and listen
It is OK not to know the answers
Allow your child to talk freely. Ask them open questions and find out how much they already know.
It is fine to say “We don’t know, but we are working on it; or we don’t know, ‘but we think’.” Use this as an opportunity to learn something new with your child!
Always answer their questions truthfully. Think about how old your child is and how much they can understand.
Your child may be scared or confused. Give them space to share how they are feeling and let them know you are there for them.
Heroes not bullies
There are a lot of stories going around
Explain that COVID-19 has nothing to do with the way someone looks, where they are from, or what language they speak. Tell your child that we can be compassionate to people who are sick and those who are caring for them. Look for stories of people who are working to stop the outbreak and are caring for sick people.
Some may not be true. Use trustworthy sites: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public and https://www.unicef.org/coronavirus/covid-19 from WHO and UNICEF.
End on a good note
Check to see if your child is okay. Remind them that you care and that they can talk to you anytime. Then do something fun together!
For more information click below links:
Parenting tips from WHO
Parenting tips from UNICEF
In worldwide languages
The mark “CDC” is owned by the US Dept of Health and Human Services and is used with permission. Use of this logo is not an endorsement by HHS or CDC of any particular product, service, or enterprise.
Parenting for Lifelong Health is supported by the UKRI GCRF Accelerating Achievement for Africa’s Adolescents Hub, the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme and the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme, Oxford University Innovation GCRF Sustainable Impact Fund, UNICEF, the Leverhulme Trust, the Economic and Social Research Council, WHO, CIDA, the National Research Foundation of South Africa, Ilifa Labantwana, Rand Merchant Bank Fund, the ApexHi Charitable Trust, the John Fell Fund, the Evaluation Fund, the UBS Optimus Foundation, USAID-PEPFAR, the Wellcome Trust, Grand Challenges Canada and Wellspring Advisors.
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