A guide to help parents and carers decide whether their child is ready to either stay at home or go out alone

This guide provides practical tips and advice to help parents and carers decide what is best for their child when it comes to staying home alone or going out alone.

It covers some of the risks parents should consider before making a decision, such as how their child feels about the idea and who they should contact in an emergency.

There is also a checklist for parents and children to work through together to help them prepare for different types of scenarios. This includes questions about what to do if there is an accident at home or they are approached by a stranger outside.

Need-to-know: how to set boundaries and build positive relationships

Balancing the various demands parents have to cope with isn’t easy and all parents can come under pressure or stress from time to time.

This guide shares practical advice and tips for positive parenting techniques that work well for children – from babies to teenagers. These techniques encourage better behaviour and help parents find out what works for them and their child.

Private Fostering

If you allow your child to be cared for by someone else for 28 days or more, and this has not been arranged formally by  Children’s Services then this could be a ‘Private Fostering Arrangement’.  It is a legal requirement that West Sussex County Council is informed that your child is being cared for by somebody else other than a close relative. It is an offence not to notify the council of any Private Fostering arrangement. If you are unsure, please seek advice from West Sussex County Council by calling 01403 229900

A Private Foster Carer is someone who is looking after your child and who is not a close relative (such as your parents, or your adult sister or brother) and who is not paid, unless by you. Step parents are treated as close relatives if they are married to the parent. Brothers and sister-in law can be classed as close relatives too.

Stranger Danger

Whilst the risk posed by strangers is rare, it’s really important to make children aware of simple tips they can follow to keep themselves a little safer. This video on Stranger Danger is designed to highlight a few key points, to be used to help you have that important conversation with your child. It is aimed at children aged 4 – 11 years. For parents, carers, families, teachers, schools and centres for young people to use to raise awareness and generate discussion that helps children keep safe. We would advise you to talk to your child about who their safe adults are and where there are safe places near you if help is needed. It’s also important to think about safety on the internet and use of mobile phone apps and games that have ‘chat’ functions as this can be just as dangerous as a stranger in the street. This video is one of a series of ’60 Second Security’ videos all around simple security advice. Designed to provide easy step by step tips, including advice on products and how to install and use them, helping to make you and your property that little bit safer. https://youtu.be/H95m0v2sIMY