Children and Survival Training

It may come as a surprise to many adults when they hear that children need to go
through survival training too. There’s no need to panic just yet. Your kids will
not need to attend a military boot camp. All they need to do is engage in some
‘fun’ activities that will train them.

Let’s look at a few things that you can do as a parent to help your child develop
strength and skills so that he/she is better able to cope with any crisis.

* Strength and fitness
In today’s society, most kids are glued to their electronic devices scanning their
social media accounts or playing video games. Playgrounds have become ghost towns
while kids huddle in their rooms for hours playing World of Warcraft.

As a result, obesity among kids has reached epidemic proportions. During a crisis,
many of these children will have a hard time coping. They’ll need to walk more, do
more manual labor, eat less and endure other inconveniences.

Since survival scenarios are never a walk in the park, you’ll need to start by
taking your kid to the park to walk often. Walking for about 20 to 30 minutes,
three or four times a week will be great for both you and the kids.

They’ll develop the strength and stamina to walk. Once their stamina builds up,
you can get them to carry their bug out bags and accompany you on the walk. The
extra weight will further strengthen them, and they’ll develop the stamina to
walk with the bags.

This skill is extremely important. If your car breaks down and you need to walk
to the evacuation center, the whole family will be able to do it without the
children giving up because they’re exhausted.

Start training before crisis strikes. Go hiking often. Walk up trails, climb
hills, etc. Add a sense of fun and adventure to the activity. If it’s physical,
the child will be getting stronger.

* Camping
If part of your survival strategy is camping in the wilderness, you must do it
several times with the family and kids until everyone gets used to it. Staying in
a tent can be cramped and uncomfortable. So, they’ll need to get accustomed to it.
There will also be the inconvenience of mosquitoes, having to boil water, going to
the toilet, etc. All these are best experienced several times so that the children
do not get a shock from the sudden changes in their life during a crisis when they
have to bug out in the wild.

Show them what plants they can touch and what they shouldn’t. Explain what insects
and animals in the area might be dangerous. This is important knowledge.

You don’t want your child bugging out with you and he goes around touching poison
ivy and getting rashes… or following a bear in the distance to see if it’s Winnie
the Pooh.

Even when in the wilderness, they’ll need to be aware of safety aspects such as
not getting too close to the fire, not venturing out too far on their own, keeping
the camping area clear of food to prevent animals from dropping by, etc.

You could teach them how to tie knots, or administer first aid skills such as
cleaning a wound and dressing it, or how to set up a tent, etc. There’s so much to
learn. So, start teaching them early. All the training and skills will come in
very handy when there is an actual crisis.

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” –
Benjamin Franklin