Supporting Children to Thrive

Every child has a right, children deserve to thrive even in tough and uncertain situations. They need to be assured of a better future and we need to fulfill our promises to protecting them.

|By Constance Ndeleko|

For a child to develop and mature emotionally and socially, they need support and consistency for them to thrive and rise above any challenges that could be detrimental to their lives either physically, socially, emotionally or mentally.

Children should have consistency and a never ending love, a nurturing caregiver and they deserve attention from us, so that we can understand what is revolving in their world and be able to effectively provide for their needs and calm down their distress.

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The best way to ensure that children thrive even in challenging situations; they should be allowed an opportunity to interact with other people beyond their homes for them to fully realize their abilities. These social interactions normally happen with close relatives, friends, neighbors, and people at child care sites, schools, places of worship, and sports teams or other activities.

Children are impacted by events that befall outside of their own communities.e.g natural calamities or conflict affecting them either directly or indirectly.  It could be information they watch on social media, mainstream media or radio that could be extremely aggressive and of polarizing language. And we need to protect these children over such information by ensuring they understand the accuracy of the information delivered in such a manner perhaps that can be anxiety-provoking for anyone but can be particularly stressful and damaging for children. Of the information shared give them assurance that things will be okay for them or other people.

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Sometimes major issues like illness, divorce, bullying, and loss of family members or close friends has negative consequences on the child’s wellbeing which could lead to behavioral changes. Fears about all of these, rational or irrational, can preoccupy a child leading to mental health illness hence there’s a clear need to protect and shield children from such issues or just a need to discuss with them about those unpleasant topics to relive their minds from such torments.

Even amidst these unprecedented times cobwebbed by the pandemic it is certain that we need to hold our children’s hands as a community, nation, continent or the world to ensure that they feel safe and protected. They should be assured of a better tomorrow despite the uncertainty and life challenges that prevails.

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It is significant for the caregiver to speak in a clear and calm manner, expressing concerns about the child’s distress, behavioral change, and attitude as well as offer their support and love and lastly the child should be offered an opportunity to speak of how they feel about certain situations and how they can help themselves approach the problem.

It is vital to allow children to seek safe spaces where they can be able to share, speak and learn from each other of the events taking place in their lives. They should be given room to express themselves freely as they seek help from people they feel they can trust and above all they totally need our support and assurance that things will come around post the happenings.

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