BROWNSBURG, Ind. (WISH) – Twenty-four kids decided to spend their summer day inside a classroom Wednesday for the Safe Sitter Program at the Brownsburg Fire Department.
The program is aimed at keeping kids safe when they are babysitting younger children at home.
“I have a toddler at home, like my brother and I love babysitting for him while my mom is gone,” said participant Ava Bulleraick.
“My mom signed me up,” added Gareth Delp. “I mean, I didn’t really know that safe sitters really existed that much before.”
The kids range in age from 11-13 years old. They were taught how to change a diaper, use first aid and how to stop a baby or child from choking. They also learned how to call 911 if there’s an emergency and behavioral management skills to help them deal with infants, toddlers and children.
Each student will walk away with a Safe Sitter certificate at the end of the program.
“They all have different experiences they can learn from each other because some of them have been staying at home by themselves maybe for a little while already and some haven’t,” said program instructor Tanya Shelburen. “We kind of take it back to the parents to decide what they’re really ready for.”
The class allows kids to overcome a few challenges and teaches them to make smart and safe decisions while home alone with younger children.
“They’ve usually made some friends in the class and they’re pretty excited. many of them want to make a little money babysitting and they know that they need to know the right skills so that they can do that successfully,” Shelburen said.