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The baby tries to move around in the house and the kitchen is the place that most calls him/her attention. It is there that the mother or who takes care of him/her spends most of the time, and where he/she finds interesting things to play with. Thus, it is in the kitchen that the accidents usually happen with the child.

The family has to watch for pan handles to be turned to the stove. It is necessary to watch for the hot oven so that the baby does not touch it and gets burnt.

If the baby gets burnt, the parents should make cold or icy bandages on the burnt spot to reduce the pain. They should not pass anything on it without medical prescription or perforate the bubbles to prevent infections.

It is necessary to remove from the baby’s reach things that he/she may catch and get cut with such as glasses, scissors and knives.

Dangerous are also those things which the baby can take or put to the mouth and get poisoned such as medications, kerosene, sanitary water, sodium hydroxide. Therefore, the cleaning products should not be kept in soft drink bottles. If the baby takes any medication or cleaning product, he should be immediately taken to the health service unit.

Analysis of the child’s situation according to the Indicators of Opportunities and Achievements

We shall see now how to interpret the responses to question 13, examining the answers to questions 14 and 15 of the Leader’s Notebook, which complete the registration of Indicators of Opportunities and Achievements. It is not necessary to answer the questions at the moment of the visit. Choose a quiet moment to do so.

nono mes bebe i

Let us think about the meaning of answers to question 13 and 14.

When in a certain month none of the indicators to question 13 is reached, we say that this is an unfavourable situation for the child’s development. This can mean that the family and the community are not managing to provide opportunities for the child’s development and therefore, the child has not presented the achievements pointed out by the indicators. Like all situations, this can also be changed but it requires to be soon investigated by you, leader. The family might be going through a difficult period that has been disturbing the family harmony. Talk to the family and help them to find solutions.

If, for the following months, the indicators continue not to be reached this indicates that the family continues unable to overcome the hard situation which is going through, even with your support, leader.

We know that is not only up to the family to meet all the child´s needs. The parents need to find, where they live, support from the health service, education and also from the child´s social assistance, in cases of much poverty. They still need help from other family members, from their neighbours and friends to form a solidarity and love network for the child to be raised in a favourable environment for the children´s development.

It is important to think about the unfavourable situations for the development of the child, for example:

• When the family has no access to the health and education services or to adequate housing; or the parents do not find jobs, or what to do when problems such as discouragement, violence or alcoholism occur. The difficulties are so many that the family members end up giving little attention, tenderness or encouragement to the child in the way an amount he/she needs to be able to grow and develop;

• When the child gets sick and this disease repeats or takes a long time to be healed. The child gets weak, loses weight and also loses the wish to learn, play and the people in the family do not seek for other ways to encourage the child;

• When the child suffers from some kind of violence: abandonment, spanking, sexual abuse, this indicates that there is a problematic case in the family.

Therefore, the basic attitude that you, leader, need to have in view of the indicators should always be that of investigating. The indicators are the first clue for you to find, together with the family, the other leaders and with the coordinators what is taking place. The indicators should not be used to label the family as negligent, uninformed or one that has no interest in taking care of the children, or less to label the child as sick, tardy or deficient.

When all the indicators are reached, the leader should celebrate with the family and value the opportunities which are provided to the child. But the family has to continue to observe, even if the child keeps on at the same age rate, because the indicators show the life situation of the child, and this may change: the opportunity can be left without being provided and the child can no longer reach that achievement.

Therefore, the answer [Y] (Yes) is an indicator to be celebrated. The answer [N] (No) should always be investigated.

nono mes bebe j