Kids being kidnapped in Austin and surrounding areas??

Hello All, Hope all of you are having a nice week. I am enjoying the spring break to the max extent this week. I got these puzzles The Learning Journey Doubles Solar System that glows in the dark and The Learning Journey Match It! Spelling. This really keeps them well occupied during the day.

We always talk to our son about how not to interact much with strangers. I usually teach him things like, never get candy or anything from a stranger, never go with any stranger, always tell us when strangers follow you and we also teach him our home address and our phone numbers so he can tell someone to call us when he is lost. We rehearse this everyday on the way to his school and he answered everything correctly. A few days after this , he asked me  “Amma what does stranger mean?”. I have no words to describe my feeling. Kids dont understand the depth of all that we tell them. 

Raji commented to this post and brought out a very good point 
Stranger danger is actually not the biggest problem in society today. Every parent should read Protecting the Gift by Gavin de Becker. It explains what the real dangers are to children (and it is not strangers!) and tells you what to teach your kids when they get lost or are in trouble. For example, when lost somewhere, not to go to a policeman or man in uniform, but instead to find a mother, with kids, and ask for help. It explains why this is the best thing to teach your children to do. It also cautions against the age old “don’t talk to strangers” and explains why children, even young ones, must be taught and given practice talking to strangers: in restaurants, or shops, asking for this or that. If they get lost or are in trouble, they need to be able to talk to the right strangers to get help, they must not be scared of strangers just because they are unknown to them.”
Here is a link to buy the book Protecting the gift

In recent times I have been reading some NEWS on kids being followed and kidnapped in areas around Austin. 
In January and  February there was a white van following kids and trying to kid nap them from Brushy Creek Elementary school in Williamson County.

On Jan 19th there was a teen aged girl  jogging in the area around Brushy Creek and a white van followed her , a man in the van asked her to get into the van. The girl ran to her house and immediately called the Sheriff’s  department.

On Feb 12th there was another incident where a white van followed a boy riding his bike in the neighborhood . The boy sped to his house and the van stopped few houses beyond his house and then drove away.

This white van created a lot of fear among the people in this neighborhood. Just be aware of this and also know the Sherrif Department’s number in your area so you can call them immediately.Check here for  Texas Sheriff’s list.

Keep your kids aware of this incident. Also ,I am planning to read the book “Protecting the gift”  and change the way I tell things to my kids about strangers. Please share your thoughts on this.