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April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. As part of our global efforts to help protect kids from abuse, bullying, and other harmful behavior, each day this month, we will share a time-tested skill from our Kidpower® 30-Skill-Challenge Coaching Handbook.

Our bodies are NOT for sale!

Skill #17: How to Resist a Bribe. Sometimes, to show the power of a bribe, we will tell adults in a parents’ workshop, “I will give you an expense-paid guilt-free trip to Hawaii for as long as you want, if you will just do something a little bit wrong.” Our adult students smile and wonder, “HOW wrong?” We then point out that, for children, a special favor or treat can be just as hard to resist as that trip to Hawaii! What can kids say to protect themselves from an unsafe bribe?

This full practice is a part of the Kidpower® 30-Skill-Challenge Coaching Handbook.

A reward is different from a bribe.

A reward is something given for service, achievement, or merit.

A bribe is something offered to try to get someone to do something, often something unsafe or unethical.

Adults often reward kids. For example, saying, “Get the mess cleaned up and you’ll have an hour of free time” is a reward for service.

Say to child, “Sometimes people try to do things that are against the rules. One way people can break the Safety Rules is by offering a bribe to do something you think is not OK or against the rules.

If someone offers you a bribe, say, ‘Stop, or I’ll tell.’”

Practice by saying, “Suppose I said, ‘I’ll buy you anything you want if you just roughhouse with me. Is that safe?” Shake your head no and wait for a no response. “No, it isn’t, because I am trying to give you a bribe for a touch that’s supposed to be your choice.”

Coach child to, “Stand up, move back and make a fence with your hands. Say, ‘Stop or I’ll tell.’”

Say, “I’ll let you stay up as late as you want if you will just let me tickle you.”

Coach child to, “Stand up, move back and make a fence with your hands. Say, ‘Stop or I’ll tell.”

Say to an older child, “I’ll make sure you get to hang out with my friends if you ignore the new kid in school.”

Coach the older child to, “Stand up, move back and make a fence with your hands. Say, ‘True friends don’t tell each other not to be with other friends. Stop or I’ll leave.”

For a FREE explanation on the simple methods you can use to teach children to use each of these skills, download the Kidpower® 30-Skill-Challenge Coaching Handbook on our website –this ebook will be FREE of charge in English, Spanish, and Arabic in honor of April as Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Please share this skill with others. Let’s work together to teach young people to take charge of their safety, increase self-confidence, and develop healthy, positive relationships! 

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Kidpower Founder and Executive Irene van der Zande is a master at teaching safety through stories and practices and at inspiring others to do the same. Her child protection and personal safety expertise has been featured by USA Today, CNN, Today Moms, the LA Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Publications include: cartoon-illustrated Kidpower Safety Comics and Kidpower Teaching Books curriculum; Bullying: What Adults Need to Know and Do to Keep Kids Safe; the Relationship Safety Skills Handbook for Teens and Adults; Earliest Teachable Moment: Personal Safety for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers; The Kidpower Book for Caring Adults: Personal Safety, Self-Protection, Confidence, and Advocacy for Young People, and the Amazon Best Seller Doing Right by Our Kids: Protecting Child Safety at All Levels.