The Safe4kids program was developed by Holly-Ann Martin from Western Australia, out of a pressing need to teach children skills on how to keep themself safe. The moto is “We all have the right to feel safe all of the time.”
Constable First Class Shane Blanchard, Community Engagement Police Officer (CEPO)
The program has been successfully delivered by Holly-Ann in remote communities in every state and territory of Australia for a number of years now.
Holly-Ann brought her program to Haasts Bluff Community from 10-12 November at the request of the school Principal, Richard ‘Dick’ Sheehan. Along with the help of Assistant Teachers Daphne Marks, Vronita Multa, Benisa Marks, Justin Corby and relieving teacher Gary Huxley & NT Police CEPO Blanchard, the lessons were delivered to all students from pre-school, transition to grade 7.
The lessons were delivered in such a way that all children took an active part with a combination of song, dance, videos, and interactive activities. Of particular note was the use of the ‘thumbs up’ (safe behaviour) and ‘thumbs down’ (unsafe behaviour) signs that all the children clearly understood and would be seen using these signs within the community outside of school hours amongst their peers.
Another useful tool was the ‘Safety Network’ hand which identified 5 adults from either family, or within the community i.e. Clinic staff, Shire, local store, Police, that the children could go to in times of need to ask for help.
Holly-Ann met with parents/grandparents/caregivers to keep them informed about the lessons taught to their children and how they can also be of assistance.
The Safe4kids program was a great success which not only educated the students on keeping themselves safe, but also gave their parents/caregivers extra information on how to keep their children safe.