Back to School: Comfort Kits

Back to School: Comfort Kits

Updated since original post in September 2013.

It’s a given, each and every year your child’s school will ask you to create a comfort kit – but what are these comfort kits actually used for? Comfort kits can make the world of a difference if your child is at school during an emergency. They provide much needed distractions during stressful situations, and can provide a sense of security to young ones.

What is a comfort kit really used for?

A comfort kit can be used in any emergency situation. Imagine a child at school when the building floods. After being evacuated from the building, teachers and school administrators have hundreds of students to account for, while also reaching contacts for the emergency release process. This is exactly when a comfort kit is needed – having familiar items can help distract children and make them feel more at ease.

school evacuationWhat should a comfort kit include?

We know it can be difficult to fit everything you would want your child to have in an emergency in a single Ziploc bag. Our previous blog, The Dreaded Comfort Kit – What to Include, provides a list of the most important items to pack in a student’s comfort kit by Bernadette Woit, Schools Emergency Management Consultant. In addition, consider these unique items to keep your child entertained:

  • Pocket-size travel games (snakes-and-ladders, checkers, chess or a puzzle)
  • A small teddy bear or stuffed animal
  • Building toys, such as Lego
  • Activity books (I-Spy, Where’s Waldo, crossword or word searches)
  • Notepad or coloring books with pencil crayons
  • Music put on an inexpensive mp3 player

Who needs a comfort kit?

Typically, only elementary students will be asked to provide a comfort kit to the school. Despite this, students attending secondary school should have one as well. Secondary school students can carry a small kit in their backpack so it is always with them, or leave it in their locker. Kits should include non-perishable food, a solar blanket, poncho, personal items and hygiene supplies to carry them through an emergency.

And don’t forget to sign up for an ePACT account to make your back to school transition easier. With ePACT, you can save the critical emergency information for each of your family members, and then share it with your support network so they can access your emergency information when it is needed most.

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