BALLARAT North Primary School pupils literally got a helping hand to keep themselves safe yesterday.
The grades three to six pupils were told to have a handful of relatives or family friends they could turn to if they were in danger by child safety advocates Bruce and Denise Morcombe.
The Morcombes lost their son Daniel, 13, in December 2003 after he was abducted from a Queensland bus stop.
“Daniel felt safe minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day,” Mr Morcombe said.
“But within one hour of shutting the front door and walking to the bus stop, he was in a situation he couldn’t control.”
The pupils were told to “Recognise, React and Report”, recognising danger signs, reacting quickly to them and reporting any incidents to an adult.
They were also advised to shout “no, my body belongs to me” and work out a family password for safety reasons, such as a stranger saying he’d been sent to pick them up.
Mrs Morcombe also spoke about the dangers of the internet.
“Most people in the community are good, not everyone driving past you in a car is an abductor, but you need to be observant and to trust your instincts,” Mrs Morcombe said.
Mr Morcombe finished the presentation by saying what he would now advise Daniel if he could have spoken to him on December 7, 2003 as he left home to get a haircut and buy Christmas presents.
“If I had one message to keep him safe, it would have been “Recognise, React and Report,” he said.
Ballarat North Primary School Student Representative Council president Bella Rizzoli said she found the presentation very interesting.
“I learnt that if you’re in danger, you always need to run to a safe location,” Bella said.
The school raised $500 for the Daniel Morcombe Foundation through a sports colour day last week.
A national day of child safety action, “Day for Daniel”, will be held on October 25 across Australia.