Farragut 5th grader is regional winner in Florida’s Missing Children Day’s essay contest

Congratulations to fifth-grader Benjamin Deskovich who is one of the six regional winners for this year’s Florida’s Missing Children Day’s essay contest.

The prompt for this year’s contest was “How do you stay safe all day?” 

For his thesis statement, Benjamin wrote,

“I am safe by following simple things like locking my doors, staying as close as I can to my parents in public, and staying as far away as I can from the people that make me feel uncomfortable.”

During the writing process, Mrs. Fowler’s class conducted interviews, collected information from child safety websites, and had a special guest speaker, Deputy LoRusso. In March, Benjamin’s essay was selected for entry based on his use of research and real-life experience. 

As a prize Benjamin will receive a $100 check from the Florida Missing Children Day Foundation. Below is his essay.


How I Stay Safe

By Benjamin Deskovich

Have you ever been around someone that makes you feel uncomfortable? Being uncomfortable is sometimes good especially around strangers. Have you ever had something of yours stolen? When your stuff gets stolen especially if that something of yours is special to you, it’s hard being safe and protecting your stuff, but there are simple tips you can follow. I am safe by following simple things like locking my doors, staying as close as I can to my parents in public, and staying as far away as I can from the people that make me feel uncomfortable. 

There is another thing that you should be scared about which is burglars. They come into your house and steal your stuff, but there are ways to prevent it. The most common thing to do is lock your doors that makes sure they can’t come into your house. You also can have a dog. Burglars don’t like dogs because they alert you or a neighbor if someone is there. The other thing that burglars do is steal out of your car. According to Officer LoRusso the St. Petersburg police officer, 90% of burglars steal out of your car. If you get robbed by a burglar, you need a security system which is normally cameras then the police can get more clues to catch the burglar, so the burglar can’t steal from anyone else. I want to stop burglars, but having your stuff stolen is better than having you stolen.

Most kids are scared because they think that burglars are going to steal them and not their stuff. When someone steals you, that is called being abducted which is most likely never going to happen to you. Being abducted has happened before. Once there was a kid named Jimmy Ryce. He was walking home from school, and he was sadly abducted and killed. There are a lot of people that get abducted. 20% of kids are abducted in one year. I think no one should be abducted.

 Once I was in my front yard playing, and a guy pulled up his car and handed me a card. I felt very uncomfortable around him, and I wish I didn’t take that card. I got so nervous, so I called the police. Even though the stranger did nothing to me, I am glad that I called the police. It’s good to be suspicious about people that makes you feel uncomfortable. If someone makes you feel uncomfortable, make sure you call the police, but only call them if you feel threatened. Even if those people did nothing wrong, it’s good that you call the police because the police can make sure you are safe. They can see if the person that makes you feel uncomfortable has done anything wrong. When you call the police, you never waste their time because, if you think about it, your parents pay for the police officers because they pay tax on the police force. But don’t call them for something ridiculous like calling them if McDonalds messed up your order.

In conclusion, to stay safe around people that make you feel uncomfortable you can stay close to an adult that you trust. To keep burglars from stealing your stuff, you can lock your doors and your car. If you ever feel threatened, you can always call the police.