Daily Life, Family, Family Life, Family Planning

Ideal for families: This is what a child-friendly city should offer

Ideal for families: This is what a child-friendly city should offer

11 features for child-friendly living

“Where do we want to live?” Many people ask themselves this question when it comes to planning their lives and families. The place of residence is more than just a place where your own furniture is. It should be able to satisfy the needs of children in particular, because the environment plays an important role in personality development. The following eleven aspects speak for a child-friendly city:

Safety: urban planning and road traffic

Children are not small adults. As a result, they cannot move around in traffic as safely and attentively as their parents can. For this reason, urban planning should take into account the increased safety needs of the youngest. make this possible

  • lighted zebra crossings
  • sufficient pedestrian traffic lights
  • wide cycle paths and sidewalks
  • cleverly integrated, traffic-calmed areas

These measures make it possible for children to walk to school independently without being exposed to major dangers. With wide cycle paths, a city also makes it possible to learn to ride a bike and thus safely approach road traffic. However, parents should not neglect road safety education.

Empowerment: Diverse support network

Families can find themselves in difficult situations for a variety of reasons. Problems in raising children, stress in the partnership or financial and health challenges: In a child-friendly city, not only the children, but of course entire families should be able to take care of themselves. Offers for practical support, access to free advice and networks for solidarity help characterize such a structure. A city should give space to these offers and, for example, promote specially designed clubs, institutions and organizations.

Youth care: Offers for the older kids

Child friendliness does not end with the tenth birthday. The needs of young people should therefore not be ignored, but also integrated into the municipal offer. With special facilities such as supervised youth clubs and places where young people can spend their free time with their peers in a safe environment, communities also cover the often somewhat turbulent period of puberty. Close cooperation between social work and schools is also important in this context. If there is the possibility in a city that internal school topics can also be clarified and worked on in the context of leisure meetings, this is an effective means of preventing bullying. In addition, social work in a city can also serve to

Supervision: Sufficient affordable space

In a child-friendly city, parents should be able to have their children cared for in an age-appropriate and affordable manner. This means that not only must there be enough space for children in day-care centers, but also an affordable framework must be created. If there is no free childcare, municipalities should be open to financially weak families with special offers and be able to offer them individual solutions. Childcare is in many cases a neuralgic point on the way back to working life. It is therefore considered to be particularly child-friendly when a city offers day-care centers where shift workers can also have their children looked after.

Health: Everything nearby

Not all families have access to their own car and have to do their errands on foot, by public transport or even by bicycle. A city that is as child-friendly as possible should therefore offer everything in the area of ​​health care that is important for the smallest members of society. These include both a dentist with a range of services for children and a pediatrician with sufficient capacity for the city’s families. A gynecological practice and good care by midwives could then also belong to the extended medical offer of such a community. This is especially important for families who are still planning a family.

Education: school offer without long distances

Just like in the area of ​​child-friendly health offers, the way to educational institutions should not be too far. In terms of child-friendliness, it is ideal if a city not only has a primary school , but also secondary schools has to offer. It goes without saying that it is important here that all the schools in a city can be reached safely by the children. The point of urban planning and traffic safety therefore plays a special role here. If there are not all types of school in a city, this does not immediately speak against child-friendliness. A good connection to public transport can then serve as a possible solution and alternative. Sufficient bus connections or even a shuttle service for children from more remote parts of the city can compensate for the lack of a local school.

Leisure: Space to romp and play

Playgrounds and green spaces are a particularly important part of child-friendly cities. The place where you live should make it possible for children of all ages to exercise in the fresh air and discover the world. To municipal offers in terms of leisure can

  • Playgrounds with a variety of play equipment
  • skate facilities
  • soccer fields
  • and large patches of grass

counting. It is essential that the facilities provided do not pose any danger. Playground equipment and other items or structures should always be maintained and replaced when necessary.

Often there are also playgrounds in residential complexes. If you let your children play there, they may suddenly see someone on the street and run to it. Talk to your child about it beforehand and don’t let small children play there unsupervised. You should also stick to the rest periods. Because children’s noise often leads to arguments with the neighbors.


Social life: Clubs, groups and offers

Social contacts are needed for the healthy development of children and young people. A wide range of freely available playing areas already lays a solid foundation here, but should be supplemented by further options. If clubs can rely on the support of the municipality for various sports or hobbies in a city, if they receive premises and possibly also financial help, a very varied range of leisure activities can develop. From the dance club to your own football team to the club for comic fans, diversity also promotes the development of your own interests.

Cleanliness: A healthy home even for the little ones

Just as playground equipment should not pose any risk of injury, cleanliness characterizes the entire cityscape of a child-friendly community. The most beautiful playgrounds and green areas are of little value if broken glass bottles and other rubbish can be found there. A thorough and well-funded program for city cleaning speaks for child-friendliness. If rubbish bins are emptied regularly, meadows are mowed and frequently frequented places are cleaned professionally, the risk of injuring yourself when playing in the city decreases. In addition, good city hygiene also protects against unwanted guests such as rats, which could contaminate play areas with their droppings.

Having a say: Participation from a young age

Another point that particularly speaks for child-friendliness is the openness of a community to the views and wishes of the youngest residents. The regular exchange of municipal leaders with children and young people can be particularly valuable when it comes to the further development of the existing offer. While smaller children and elementary school students can only participate with suggestions or wishes due to their age, the establishment of a youth committee for older children makes sense. This offers the opportunity to go into direct exchange and to awaken the interest of the next generation in local politics. Also: Anyone who is allowed to have a say in a city automatically feels more accepted.

Living together: connecting generations with special offers

Not all families are lucky enough to have access to grandparents. If they have already died or live very far away, a particularly important part of the family is lost. It is often the grandparents who take care of children in their free time and can offer them other perspectives. A city can not only position itself as child-friendly with a special offer for networking the generations, such as the placement of loan grandparents. The commune also enables the older generation to have a more varied life, which can indirectly affect the life satisfaction of all residents of the commune. Loan grandparents also represent another safety net for working parents. If the day care center or school fails, there is someone who is happy to step in. Also a Multi-generation house is ideal for families. Young and old residents help each other here.

More information about child-friendly-cities in the US: