Safe Food for Babies and Children:
A Guide for Babysitters
North Dakota State University
Fargo, North Dakota 58105
Babysitting is a great way to earn money, help neighbors and gain
job experience. It’s a big responsibility, too. When parents trust you to
babysit, they are placing their children’s health and safety in your hands.
Infants and young children are especially vulnerable to foodborne
illness and even a small error in food preparation could cause severe
illness. Read on to learn more about what jobs to accept, how to handle
emergencies and how to be safe in the kitchen when preparing and
■ Obtain the address and phone number of where the
parents will be.
■ Obtain phone numbers for emergency services, such as
the police, fire department and poison control center.
■ Ask if the children have any special needs, allergies or
■ Never open the door to strangers.
■ Make sure you stay with the
children at all times.
■ Make sure all doors and windows
■ Ask about the location of first aid
supplies and any needed cooking
equipment or utensils.
■ If there is an alarm system, learn
how to use it.
■ Call a trusted adult or the police
if you feel uneasy or suspicious
about something you see or hear.
■ Do not invite a friend over unless it
is OK’d by the parents.
Accepting a job offer
■ Only accept jobs from people
you know or who have been
referred by a friend and/or
approved by a parent or
■ Make sure your parents know
where you are babysitting.
Leave the address and phone
number of your job site. Tell
someone at your home what
time to expect you back.
■ Find out what time the parents
expect to be home. Ask them
to call if it will be much later.
■ Make sure you have an escort
For more information about nutrition and food safety, visit the NDSU Extension Service Web site:
NDSU Extension Service, North Dakota State University of Agriculture and Applied Science, and U.S.