Grand Prairie, TX -- (ReleaseWire) -- 01/12/2017 -- According to the FBI and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, every 40 seconds a child becomes missing or is abducted in the United States. At the same time, millions of children continue to walk to and from school by themselves, visit their friends' homes, and spend more time without parental supervision. As our children become more independent, it's crucial for them to understand how to keep themselves safe.
In the past, parents taught their children "Stranger Danger" to keep them safe. However, countless experts have shown that the outdated message of "Stranger Danger" is not only inaccurate (in 76% of the kidnappings, relatives or acquaintances abduct children), but also confusing for most children. (When in danger, should they reach out to police officers, who are also strangers?) Yet, children still need to learn how to interact safely and reasonably with strangers.
In order to help caregivers walk this delicate line, Amy Winfield wrote a children's book that helps children understand stranger safety, without scaring them or misinforming them. Cautious Fred is told from the perspective of a little green frog, Freddy, who's walking home from school through a thick, eerie bog. Along the way, he meets several characters – a crafty croc, a sneaky snake, and other suspicious creatures. With his mother's advice ringing in his ears, Freddy keeps safe on his own, while showing children how to do the same.
Instead of illustrating strangers as obviously scary and bad, as children often picture, Cautious Fred presents several suspicious situations that any person can use to lure a child. Most people are familiar with teaching kids not to take gifts from strangers. But if our kids are naturally helpful, should they assist an adult who claims to be hurt, or needs their help? Or, do they follow friendly people to other places, including strangers who claim to know them or people they're actually familiar with? Freddy shows children how to identify and work through these situations using common sense and their intuition.
The Kickstarter project for Cautious Fred launches on January 11th; funds go towards the printing and distribution costs for the book. Reward levels include hardcover copies of Cautious Fred, signed copies, posters, coloring books, a Kickstarter exclusive guide, "How to Read Cautious Fred with Your Child" and much more!
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