Keeping Camping with Family Fun and Safe

When you take your kids camping in the great outdoors, there are a few things you must keep in mind, for safety’s sake.

Camping during summer holidays is one of the best ways of experiencing a little one-on-one time with your children and with mother nature. While kids love the freedom of the great outdoors, so do many parents. After all, there are no clocks to watch, and no television or computers to divide attention. There’s just you and the kids, making fires, roasting marshmallows, hiking and swimming.

Of course, camping can pose hazards. However, by exercising a little caution these hazards can be avoided. Fires must be supervised, as do all water activities. And because every year we hear or read of a child who has been lost in the woods, we need to keep a close eye on our little ones explains Laurie LeClair with the Alberta Safety Council. “If you are going to take your children on a camping weekend or a week, the key is to keep them as well supervised as possible. If your child does wander off, coach the child that if you wander off, stay put. If you lose us stay where you are, because we will find you. If you keep wandering around, we’re all going to wander in circles and we’re not going to find one another.” LeClair also suggests that parents pin a whistle to their child’s shirt or jacket as a safety measure. That way, if a child does get lost, he can stay in one place and blow his whistle to attract attention.

LeClair adds that accidents happen anywhere, including in campgrounds. Whether it’s a scraped knee or something more serious, parents should be trained in basic CPR and first aid, and must bring along a first aid kit.

Finally, LeClair reminds us that “other hazards include wild animals, depending on where you’re camping. Find out in advance what kind of animals are in the area from the camping authorities at that campground. Don’t let your children feed the animals. It encourages them. It brings forth animals that may be congenial when they’re being fed, but turn nasty if the food runs out.”

All in all, camping is a wonderful family activity that teaches children appreciation of nature and provides quality time together for everyone. And with just a little common sense and a few precautions, camping can be a safe and fun summer vacation.


Adapted from The Parent Report Radio Show. Any advice or information contained herein should never be a substitute for professional and/or medical advice, diagnosis and treatment. For more information please review Terms of Service.

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