Last week I took my son to his favourite park in Manchester, he loves this particular park as there is also a farm there, meaning he gets to see the animals too. There is also an ice cream van there which is really annoying (he has cow’s milk protein allergy) but he will settle for a orange ice lolly which is labelled as a may contain milk. My son turned two last month so he doesn’t fully understand yet that he can only eat certain ice creams, which are dairy and soya free. I hate seeing his face so upset every time he asks for an ice cream and I have to explain that the ice cream van only sells ice cream with cow’s milk in which makes him poorly.
My son absolutely loves the slide in the picture above, I have to hold his hand while he walks up the steps and then I run back down the steps while he’s on the slide, ready to meet him at the bottom. He’ll go on this slide at least 20 times, it’s a great work out for me and tires him out but this time when we were walking up the steps I noticed a half eaten chocolate bar on the rocks, next to the slide. Toddlers love to explore with their mouths and although my son isn’t putting everything he picks up in his mouth these days he is still putting most things in. It’s so frustrating to see a half eaten chocolate bar just laying there in a children’s park, not only is it littering but it’s putting children with food allergies at risk.
My son often tries to climb up the rocks next to this slide, as other older children do but I don’t let him as he is too young. He couldn’t reach the chocolate bar from the steps but seeing it there really brought it home of how I literally can not relax anywhere, in case someone has left some food somewhere that could cause my son to have an allergic reaction. It’s so sad and stressful to have to be on my guard whenever we leave the house because of food. I know so many of you will relate to this feeling and have probably had similar experiences, I just wish all parents would teach their children not to litter – especially when it’s half eaten food. I understand they may not have any experiences with food allergies and therefore will not understand the effects of leaving half eaten food around could have on someone but regardless of that, it is still littering so it shouldn’t be there.
I guess this post is more about me having a bit of a moan and a rant but maybe some parents will see it and think twice about letting their children leave half eaten food laying around in future.
Please share this post with your friends on Facebook, the more people who see it, the better chance we have of educating other parents about the risks involved with letting their children litter.