Making sure your child stays safe at parties (Simplified English)

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Key Messages

  • If your child is invited to a party, make a time to talk to them about staying safe.

  • Talk to the parents who are hosting the party to check details and give your phone number.

  • During the party, keep your mobile phone with you in case your child or the hosts need to contact you.

Things to talk to your child about


Even if your child is not exposed to alcohol at home, as they get older alcohol might be at social events and parties. It’s a good idea to talk about alcohol before your child is exposed to it, and them being invited to a party can be a good time for this talk.

Let your child know your feelings on drinking alcohol. Setting clear rules can help to delay your child from starting to drink alcohol and prevent alcohol related harms. Providing alcohol for your child to take to a party is not a good idea. This sends the message that drinking alcohol is okay, which can lead to young people drinking more from a younger age.

If you think your child or others at the party will be drinking alcohol, talk to your child about staying safe and avoiding harm. This can be advice like:

  • Don’t drive or get in a car with a driver who has been drinking.
  • Stay with friends.
  • Don’t join in activities like swimming, riding a bike and other physical sports.

Dealing with peer pressure

Talk to your teenager about what to do if they are faced with peer pressure to drink alcohol or take drugs. It might help to remind them that the majority of teenagers do not use alcohol or drugs. Only 36% of 17-year-olds are “current drinkers”. You can also let them know how many young people in Australia use alcohol or other drugs, to show them that by not using drugs they are part of the majority of young Australians.

See our factsheet making choices to help your teenager think about situations they may face where they have to deal with peer pressure, and some strategies to do this successfully. They can also watch this 2-minute video on how to say no without losing face.

What to do if something goes wrong

It’s good for your child to know what to do if something goes wrong. Some tips to help prepare them are:

  • Repeat safety messages before every party. Make it simple, such as teach them to call you or an ambulance (000) if something goes wrong.
  • Let them know they will not get in trouble if they need help. Keep your mobile phone with you while your child is at the party.
  • Remind them that there will be adult supervision, and they should talk to the adult if anything goes wrong.
  • Remind them that situations can sometimes get out of control and that it is best to speak to an adult as soon as there is a problem.
  • Ask them to look after their friends at the party, especially if there will be alcohol.
  • Ask your child to read our factsheet on how to put someone in the recovery position in case one of their friends is unconscious and they need to wait for help.

To discuss with the hosting parents

It’s a good idea to contact the parents who are hosting the party to check details about the party. This can include anything you are worried about, but some suggestions are below.

Will there be alcohol at the party?

If the answer is yes, let the hosting parents know whether your child will still be attending the party and whether you give permission for your child to drink.

What supervision will be there?

Ask the hosting parents about their plan for supervising the party, such as how many adults will be there. Make sure you are satisfied with this level of supervision. If you can help supervise, offer this to the parents.

What time will the party start and finish?

Ask the host for a clear start and end time. This will help you organise transport to and from the party and know where your child is if you are not taking them yourself. Plan with your child how they will get home after the party, and make sure they have a safe option.

Swap contact numbers

Save the phone number of the hosting parents in case you need to contact them.

Page last reviewed: 19/07/2021

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