Home Child Safe: Becoming a foster parent and welcoming a child into your home can be an exciting and nerve-racking time for you and your family. You’re choosing to share your lives with them and integrating them into your family unit, and you’re opening up your home to them. If you don’t already have kids, before the day of their arrival, you should spend some time going through the home and making sure that all of your rooms are kid safe and free of any hazards. Let’s take it room by room and discuss what to look for and what changes to make.
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Check Every Room
There are some general tips you can apply to all the rooms in your house when it comes to making them safe for children. Once your foster application has been approved by the foster agency you’ve chosen, like fcascotland.co.uk, it’s time to start getting the home in order for their arrival.
The first thing you should do is walk around the entire home and cover any sockets that are exposed with a child-safe cover. Remove or reroute extension leads and other cables that run across walkways where they will become a tripping hazard to a running child. Look around for objects that might be accidentally knocked off tables or pulled down from shelves and secure them.
The Living Room
Fire hazards should be considered carefully in the living room. Make sure things like candles and matches are well out of reach or packed away and that the fireplace is covered with a heat-resistant grate both to prevent lit fires from causing burns, but also to stop smaller kids from climbing into the fireplace while it is not burning. Check that your television set is sturdy and on a stand that is big enough or mount it on a wall to prevent it from being accidentally knocked over. Photo frames that include glass should be out of reach, or the glass replaced with plastic or Perspex.
The kitchen is a room that is full of potential risks, and the best thing you can do is limit your new foster child’s access to it. If they’re a younger child, a child gate to stop them from going into the kitchen at all unless you’re there is an option. For the most part, kids who are old enough to prepare their own food won’t have any trouble in the kitchen but take some precautions anyway.
In the bathroom, the biggest hazard is water. Make sure that the bath tap is either out of reach or covered so it can’t be turned on, and don’t use liner bags in your laundry basket, because these can be a choking hazard to an unsuspecting child. Keep on top of the water on the floor in the bathroom too, and quickly mop up any puddles, or add additional non-slip rugs in the bathroom so kids can’t easily slip and fall.
Your home is a place of safety and comfort, so take the right precautions before your foster child arrives, and you’ll have no trouble with unwanted accidents around the home.