Art balloons for child protection
SAINT Mary’s Myrtleford Primary School preparatory to year four students took to the school pavement with chalk on Friday to demonstrate their awareness of personal safety and protection strategies.
The children observed ‘White Balloon Day’ by dressing in white, making paper masks of virtual balloons and drawing representations of these symbols of celebration to show that they understood the need to speak up for themselves if ever they felt threatened.
Teacher Julie Humphreys, who coordinated the activities, told the children they each had a right to feel safe with other people.
“It’s okay to say ‘ No’ if you feel unsafe or unsure,” she said, asking the students to repeat the phrase.
She also encouraged them to speak up.
“There’s nothing so yucky that you can’t tell someone about it,” she said.
White Balloon Day was an idea developed 21 years ago by Hetty Johnston and the organisation she has since chaired – Bravehearts Australia – to raise awareness about protecting children from interference and sexual assault.