The solution to calming a child under stress can be as simple as giving them a book.
That is the idea behind a charity named Books to the Rescue. Based in the Dayton, Ohio area, this organization fundraises to equip first responders and social workers with new books and plush toys to comfort kids in crisis. Its website, http://www.bookstotherescue.org/, lists its goals as
Provide a tangible aid in helping children cope with stress.
Build a bridge of trust between a child and victim advocate and first responders.
Promote positive relations, perceptions, and overall communications enabling the child to open up and share with the trusted adult.
This idea germinated in the summer of 2014 with a court case involving a three-year-old victim of domestic violence. Since 2015, it’s been tested in both large cities and small towns. Results have been especially promising with first responders. Some of these kids rarely get anything new, and “Can I keep this?” is a common first question. Receiving a new book can help diffuse a tense situation and facilitate communication.
For more information, visit the website, especially the “Our Stories” tab. Also see “Officer: Books ‘just as vital as Narcan’ for first responders” by Richard Wilson at https://www.daytondailynews.com/news/local/officer-books-just-vital-narcan-for-first-responders/A8an7qQ25m4FfoqHTGSJdK/ .