Only three weeks into 2020 and care and safety of our children is glaring against the background of chitter-chatter of state capture stories, the global environmental crisis and bickering politicians who claim to right the world at the same time that they bring disorder and partisanship. The lifeless bodies of children found in swimming pools and downstream present brutal and shocking images to a nation that prides itself on the “will of the people” and “where every citizen is equally protected by the law”.
Law is however not a magic wand that waves justice, equality and protection into the lives of the citizens. The citizens – women, men, youth, adults, elderly, and children – have rights but also responsibilities. Individuals and groups are rights holders but they are also duty bearers.
The organisation Childsafe https://www.childsafe.org.za/index.html (phone 021 685 5208) takes a very practical approach to the role of families and constituent family members in ensuring the safety of children. The provide ACTION information and awareness raising on issues of water and road safety, safety with regard to fires and poisons. Two thoughts jump out BE PREPARED and TAKE OWNERSIP!!! Also don’t be vague about who is the duty bearer. It’s not the community who is prepared and takes ownership; its families and constituent family members who are the duty bearers. A shout out to Childsafe – you get the January 2020 award for strengthening families and reminding us of our individual and collective responsibilities! Thank you.