Gone are the days when raising children was communal and parents could entrust anyone with their children's safety. In the modern age of pedophiles and child traffickers, it is hard to leave your child with just anyone. What exacerbates the worry is the fact that parents and guardians are forced to make the tough choice of leaving their children with someone else as they secure the daily bread. In most cases, parents opt to hire nannies to watch their children on their behalf.

Before hiring a nanny it's important to ensure that they possess certain skills that are necessary for your child's upbringing. Some of the skills are as follows:

Basic communication capability

Ensure that your nanny possess basic communication skills and if they don't, train them. Your nanny should be able to engage your child in conversations at their level and with the language they understand. If they can teach your children a new language or read them a story, the better.

First Aid

Photo by 🇸🇮 Janko Ferlič / Unsplash

Basic First Aid skills would go a long way in ensuring the safety of your children. In cases of an accident, the care taker should be able to know what to do. They know how to respond to burns, cuts and bruises. They should also be able to perform Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation(CPR). Ensure that you provide more than one contact that your nanny can call in case of an emergency.

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Health and safety

Photo by Andries Meijer / Unsplash

Apart from First Aid, your nanny or domestic worker must have some working knowledge on poisons, storage of food stuff to avoid contamination, waste disposal, fire safety and evacuation procedures.

You could go a notch higher and ensure they are trained on what to do in case of a terrorist attack, or a robbery.

Organizations like the Red Cross and St. John Ambulance offer first aid and safety courses at an affordable fee.

Child psychology

Los niños de Guinea Ecuatorial se levantan cada día bajo una realidad que no es nada fácil.

En el barrio Patio Pérez de Malabo, surge Verano Útil, una iniciativa para niños y niñas que busca ser un espacio de encuentro y de unión; una forma de ofrecer unas vacaciones diferentes a los que no tie- nen otras oportunidades; una opción para no estar en la calle, en un entorno peligroso, y un momento en el que poder divertirse y convivir con otros.

Verano 2018.
Photo by Santi Vedrí / Unsplash

Since your children will be spending most of their time with the nanny, it is important to ensure that the nanny is equipped to guide the child through their development.

In some cases, a child may be struggling with a developmental challenge, having a nanny that can understand this without victimising them is golden. A good nanny should be able to handle your teenager even when they become unruly especially during the early days of adolescence.

Most accredited house girl and nanny agencies train nannies on how to properly care for a child's emotional and developmental needs. In Kenya such agencies include Mother Goose Nanny School.

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Cases of children disappearing have risen at an alarming rate and children are being grabbed even outside their doorsteps as they play.

In conclusion...

Apart from the above key competencies, it is important that you look out for qualities that make a good nanny. These include empathy, respect for both the children and adults, selflessness among other key quality that you should intuitively be able to note on first impressions. A literate individual should be your first choice when it comes to the safety of your children.

The exciting July issue of Parents magazine is here!
On this anniversary issue, we feature Pastor T. Mwangi, known for his straight-forward approach on matters Christianity, and his wife Claudia. The former rapper and his wife share their journey in marriage and raising a generation of young people strong in faith.