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The Maryland National Guard Child and Youth Program serves children and youth ages and provides opportunities for youth to develop their physical, social, emotional and cognitive abilities and to experience achievement, leadership, employment and friendship. Our role is to develop young leaders who can mentor others experiencing the same life situations and to educate the community about Guard Youth experiences. Applicants must be a Family Member of any actively serving Maryland National Guard Member and be between years old. Applicants who are 12 years old may apply for a future opening when they turn 13 and 18 year old applicants must be enrolled in school. Through these partnerships, CYP and 4-H Extension have been able to increase program availability in multiple counties.
If your child thinks you may take away or heavily restrict their games or online activities, they may become more secretive about their activities and less likely to come to you with issues. Avoid making your safety interventions seem like punishments.
If you believe you or your child has been the victim of a crime, or you believe you have grounds for a civil lawsuit, you may want to consult with an attorney. Understand the risks that children and teens may face online and stay alert to s of distress linked with online activity.
Legal Protections Some acts of cyber exploitation may constitute a crime under Maryland or Federal law, and some acts of exploitation may create civil legal liability for the perpetrator. If you are staying home more often with your family, you and your children are likely spending increased time online.
You can take simple steps to help your child safe while using online platforms Tell your child that just like you need to keep them safe in real life, you need to keep them safe online. Ask them what online platforms they use: consider social media, gaming apps like Roblox or Minecraft online, text and video platforms like Discord, Twitch, etc.
Educate yourself on the privacy settings available on these platforms. Some acts of cyber exploitation may constitute a crime under Maryland or Federal law, and some acts of exploitation may create civil legal liability for the perpetrator.
Learn more. While online spaces can be an excellent way to stay educated, entertained, and socially connected, there is a risk that your child may encounter uncomfortable or high-risk predatory situations. Work with your child or teen to make sure they: Regularly review all privacy settings; Adjust their settings so locations cannot be identified; Can block anyone that makes them feel uncomfortable; and Know where to seek help.
Stay engaged in what your child is doing online; have computers placed in a central location, check in on their social media s, ask questions, etc.
If you would like to arrange a training on online safety for your group or organization, please fill out our training request form here. Home Prevention Here. Make sure your child knows that when you have conversations about safety or set rules and boundaries, it does not mean that that they did anything wrong or that they are in trouble.
Let them know that if they are ever in an uncomfortable situation or if someone online is acting strangely, that they can and should come to you right away without fear of punishment. Explain how people online may not be who they say they are, and that anything shared online, like photos or private information, can be made public. Protect While They Connect If you are staying home more often with your family, you and your children are likely spending increased time online.
Legal options for fighting cyber exploitation may include: a civil suit for damages or to en stop someone from doing something, filing for a protective order to prevent contact from the perpetrator, or filing criminal charges against the perpetrator if their actions constitute a crime.