Coalition of NGOs for Child Protection – KOMF urges parents, guardians and families to prioritize protecting children from the transmission of the COVID-19 virus and the adverse psychological effects that children may have as a result of this pandemic. Based on information from the National Institute of Public Health of Kosovo, fortunately till now, no children in Kosovo have been identified as affected by the COVID-19 virus.
KOMF appreciates the measures taken by the Government of Kosovo to prevent the spread of the pandemic. Despite the measures taken so far, KOMF considers that parents and guardians should be attentive and responsible to ensure prevention, protection, accurate information and wellbeing for children.
KOMF calls on you parents and guardians of children to keep children safe in the home environment at home, which at this time is being considered a necessary measure for not exposing children and preventing the spread of the virus. Parents, reduce exits only in emergencies! Regarding preventive measures for the protection of children from the COVID-19 virus, parents, follow the recommendations of the Ministry of Health and the National Institute of Public Health of Kosovo, such as washing hands with water and soap as often as possible, maintaining personal hygiene and home hygiene, ventilation, staying at least 2 meters away from each other.
Given the situation created, it’s easy that you parents and guardians to feel overwhelmed by everything you’re hearing about pandemic (COVID-19) right now. It’s also understandable if your children are feeling anxious, too. Children might find it difficult to understand what they are seeing online or on TV – or hearing from other people – so they can be particularly vulnerable to feelings of anxiety, stress and sadness. Therefore KOMF calls on you parents, to have an open, supportive discussion with your children can help them understand, cope and even make a positive contribution for others.
To reduce the potential negative impacts of the situation on children, parents and guardians, follow the childcare recommendations:
- Encourage children to express their concerns about the situation;
- Inform children correctly about the COVID-19 virus. Depending on the child’s age and development, provide information, choose the appropriate approach and methodology. During the discussion, be willing to listen, provide support, attention, and safety;
- Inform children about ways of protecting and preventing the spread of the virus such as hand washing, hand disinfection, keeping the necessary distance, etc. Do this together using fun methods, through play, reading, singing and drawing;
- Keep up the family routine as usual, develop as many educational and fun activities with the children as possible;
- Research for books, movies, various family engagement games during this time;
- Work with children so they are not disconnected from the educational system;
- Enable online communication with their friends so that they do not interrupt social life;
- Work with children to develop new skills for them.
KOMF requires the maximum commitment of all parents and stakeholders involved in managing the situation with COVID-19, in order to maintain the health of children.