Not only are children and young people contracting COVID-19, they are also among its most severely impacted victims. Unless we (especially the parents) act now to address the pandemic’s impacts on children, the echoes of COVID-19 will permanently damage the child’s mental health psychosis attitude.
Major learning in this discussion:
- Role of parents to keep their child busy at home: Parents should have a calm, proactive conversation with their children about the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), and the important role children can play in keeping themselves healthy.
- Parents nee to create a structure & make a plan. Talk with the kids about what their daily structure will be, how they will handle stress, and when they will take breaks from telework or schoolwork to relax and connect with each other.
- Create the space for family members to talk about their worries. When it comes to processing difficult emotions, “take the signals from the child, and really think a lot about balancing talking about feelings with finding distractions, and allow distractions when kids need relief from feeling very upset.
- Parents need to monitor their own behavior.
One of the biggest challenges for parents under the 21-day lockdown is to keep their kids engaged and feeling upbeat. We are all in an unfamiliar situation and have no clue of how to deal with it. And while we think that children and largely oblivious to the gravity of the coronavirus pandemic, we may be wrong. Which is why the focus of parents shouldn’t be on keeping their children engaged and motivate them to keep learning, but to keep them happy and focus on their mental well being, amidst rising anxiety and isolation. This was the crux of our third discussion.
Speaker: Dr. SOUMYA KANTA MISHRA, who is the State Head of Odisha in Save The Children Organisation. He is having more than 25 years of experience in the field of Child Rights and Public Health.
Dr. Sushree Sangita Mohanty, Deputy Director cum Assistant Professor KISS Moderated and Coordinated the Webinar.