Thursday, October 4, 2018

YCPO - October 2018

October 2018, Young Children Newsletter.

I am the Young Children District Chair for 2018-19.
This year International President Poly Lat asked that the International Committee of Young Children Priority One (0 to age 5) be expanded to focus on children from 0 to age 8. The Young Children International Committee will focus on the needs of this group with a heavy emphasis still on Young Children Priority One(YCPO) prenatal to age 5.

I have been your District Chair for 7 years, and I am passionate about educating new parents to promote optimal health and brain development in their babies along with preventing trauma in their lives.

I’d like to share my story with you. I was born in 1949 when not much was know about prematurity and how it might affect a person throughout his/her life. I was born at 24 weeks weighing 1 1/2 lbs and was placed in a incubator for two months. Back then babies were given oxygen and many were given an overdoses(not knowing any better) of oxygen which was harmful. Many babies’ eyes were damaged and blindness resulted. I was fortunate as I only lost sight in one eye, and the other was damaged but I could see. I have been plagued by vision issues throughout my life, but now serious problems are catching up with me.

Once grown to an adult my Mom apologized to me because she did not take good care of herself while pregnant, and she said there was much stress in her life at that time which resulted in my premature birth. I am living proof of what can happen if women don’t take care of themselves while pregnant. Kiwanians have an opportunity to educate the public about healthy life styles, good nutrition and other ways to prevent premature births.

Once the child is born we can further educate new parents about ways to promote optimal brain development in their babies and to prevent pediatric trauma which hinders or destroys healthy brain development.

To quote Dr. Wil Blechman, former Kiwanis International President and Chairperson of our International Committee:
The mission of Our Committee is “.... educating our members about the importance of enhancing the likelihood of success for children 0-8 and especially the prenatal period to age 5. Happily, Kiwanis has always had a soft spot for kids, but it is rather interesting that many Kiwanians, and indeed many citizens, only think of the years from kindergarten on up when looking into possible service projects. Note I said many, not all. However, with what we now know from research on child development and especially brain development, it is more important than ever to get everyone to recognize that adults truly begin their lives before being born, and that their adult lives are powerfully affected by their experiences while in utero and the years that follow, especially through age two --- the time when the basic structure of the brain is being created.”

So how can Kiwanians work towards accomplishing these goals? Every month I write a Young Children Newsletter which I share with all Lt. Governors. I ask them to forward the Newsletter to Club Secretaries who are asked to share the information with members via email or by printed copy at their next Kiwanis meeting. So I hope you receive these newsletters which contain educational information on pertinent topics and project ideas aimed at age prenatal to age 8. These newsletters are also posted on the New England District of Kiwanis website homepage ( in case you don’t receive them.

I hope you will read the newsletters, and be encouraged to do one new project this year aimed to improve the lives of young children in addition to what you are already doing. And, of course, if you start a new project, I hope you will repeat it each year as there are new moms and new babies that can benefit each new year.

I am YOUR District Chair. Please feel free to contact me with question. Or if you would like me to visit your Club/Division with Project ideas, please contact me. And please share with me anyYoung Children projects you are doing this year.
Finally, I hope to see you at Fall Conference and other District happenings. I have a Young Children table in the exhibit hall with lots of educational materials and project ideas which I hope you will share with your Kiwanis Club. I look forward to meeting each of you in the near future!

Ava Adams
Young Children District Chair
New England and Bermuda District

Friday, August 31, 2018

YCPO - September 2018

Good Morning Fellow Kiwanians!
Does your Club have a Signature Project which connects your Club to your community? When community members see “Fishing Derby” do they say “Kiwanis”?
This month I will focus on SIGNATURE project ideas. Here we go!
Lexington Pre-School (Scottsburg Kiwanis Club, Indiana)
Young Children: Priority One
Community Service
The community of Lexington, IN determined the need for a pre-school for it's children to improve their performance when they enter elementary school. The small community of Lexington (parents, business leaders, church groups, volunteers) came together to create a new pre-school (staff, equipment, facility, teachers, supplies, etc). Various community groups in Scott County came together to provide what was needed as the committee identified it's requirements. We purchased supplies to assist in the opening of the pre-school.
Mad Hatter Children's Tea Party (Kiwanis Club of Solvay-Geddes-Camillus, New York)
Young Children: Priority One
Community Service
Service Leadership Programs
To provide an afternoon of silliness and fun for girls and boys between the ages of 3 and 8 (of course any age was welcome). It also fulfilled a reading experience for these children as we had a storyteller, the Queen of Hearts, narrate a young child's version of Alice in Wonderland as the story was acted out by our Mad Hatter characters sitting at a long Mad Hatter's table in the middle of "Wonderland". The characters in the skit were the Mad Hatter, Alice, March Hare, White Rabbit, Doormouse, Cheshire Cat, and Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum.
While tickets were sold to attend the event, this is not a fundraiser.
Park Independence (Kiwanis Club of Lafayette, LA) Playgrounds
Child Safety
Health and Wellness
Young Children: Priority One
Community Service
 Park Independence was a multi- year project to raise funds, plan,design & construct the first playground in Lafayette specifically designed so that all children can play together regardless of ability.
The entire park is designed to be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. A child on a wheelchair can ride all the way up to the park from the parking lot, enter the park and ramp up for a ride on the playground equipment itself.
“We even have a swing designed to accommodate a wheelchair, so that even the simple joy of swinging on a swing can be had by a wheelchair-bound child,” club member Kevin Domingue says. “We also have special entrances and exits to the park so itʼs easy for parents and guardians to keep watch over their children who might tend to stray from the park. Our intent is to eliminate barriers and create a place where all children can play together—regardless of abilities.”
Children's Books Distribution (Kiwanis Club of Huntington, Read Around the World (incl. all literacy projects)
Young Children: Priority One
Community Service
One member collects gently used children's books, largely left from 2 church fairs, sorts them by age and condition, and distributes them to organizations that serve children. This year, the books were donated to the Dolan Family Health Center, which serves largely uninsured and under-insured Huntington residents. The books are used as an important part of the Dolan's Reach Out and Read Program, which is a nationally recognized program, in which the pediatrician's office takes an active role in the promotion of early literacy. The program consists of having books available in the waiting room for the children to look at, volunteers reading to children in the waiting room, training pediatric clinicians in the importance of literacy, and giving each child a developmentally and culturally appropriate book to take home at each well visit.
Joy of Reading (Kiwanis Club of Denbigh, VA)
Read Around the World (incl. all literacy projects)
Young Children: Priority One
Community Service
Club members read weekly to children 3-5 years of age at Newport News School System's Early Childhood Center. Club distributes free books twice a year to over 600 children.

Worlds Greatest Baby Shower (The Kiwanis club of the University City, Florida) Health and Wellness
Young Children: Priority One
Community Service
The event is held at a local middle school, breakfast and lunch are provided. We invite 30 exhibitors to participate and arrange for 10-12 presenters to do educational offerings such as breast feeding, safety in the home, shaken baby, kids in the kitchen, etc. The expectation is the participants will attend 4 presentations and at the end of the presentation each participant will be given a ticket. After lunch everyone will go to the auditorium for drawings for door prizes. The prizes are baby items such as quilts and gift cards to Wal-Mart. Each participant is given a goody bag as they leave.
Baby Crib recycling project (Kiwanis Club of Carmel Golden K, Indiana) Child Safety Health and Wellness
Young Children: Priority One
Community Service
Many cribs are being shipped to Malawi in southeastern Africa to be used for over a 1,000 orphans there. Others are being recycled into articles such as benches for sale as a fundraiser by our club's woodworking shop.
ABC Summer Reading Program (Kiwanis Club of Monroe Downtown, Michigan) Read Around the World (incl. all literacy projects)
Community Service
Our program is meant to keep student's brains active in the summer so that they will not be at a disadvantage when they start school. We do this through fun books and activities that are not too taxing. We focus on developing a theme that allows us to give the kids fun, but in-depth information. We also want to use a theme that will introduce students to concepts that they will later have to learn in school. We strongly feel that students develop more creative skills and grasp information better when they are introduced to information repeatedly and when that introduction is fun.

More YCPO service project ideas
Adopt a family
Many families receive assistance during the holidays, but what about the rest of the year? By February, these families are running out of the household items they received at Christmas. Ask your local food pantries, churches or homeless shelters who and how you can help now.
Collect sports equipment for kids
Many families donʼt have the resources they need to buy the equipment their kids need to stay safe while theyʼre being active. Collect new or gently used balls, gloves, bats, tricycles,  helmets and more and donate them to your local preschool or to an organization.
Rehab a playground
Team up with Kiwanis-family members to pull weeds, spread new mulch, paint old equipment, fix broken swings or whatever else needs to be done. Need to start from scratch? team up with KaBOOM.
Make Blankets
The Key Club at Chesaning Union High School (Michigan) recently made 100 no-sew fleece blankets for residents of a domestic violence shelter. Use their idea as inspiration and create your own blankets to donate to an organization in your community.
Become a Storybook lady or man
Volunteer at your local library or community center and read childrenʼs classics. Liven up story time even more when you dress the part. Choose a tiara, hat, clown nose or animal ears.
Run an activities booth
Does your community have an expo, fair or parade coming up? Make your booth the most popular of all with games, crafts and face painting for children age 3 and up.
Give the gift of mobility
The Kiwanis Club of Waitukubuli (Dominica) purchased a wheelchair for a child with cerebral palsy. What could you and your club do to help a child in your community?.
Team up with a Service Partner
Work with one of the Kiwanis-familyʼs partners on a ready-made service project. Choose from Boys and Girls Clubs of America, UNICEF, March of Dimes,Childrenʼs Miracle Network, Scholastic Books and others.
I know many clubs are doing Young Children Priority One Projects.Does your Club have a Y.C.P.O. Signature Project?  I would welcome news of all your Y.C.P.O. Projects. I would like to share your successes through my Newsletters with all the clubs in our District. So please email information about your Y.C.P.O.  projects. Its important to share ideas so other Clubs may help young children in their communities too!
It has been a pleasure serving you this year as Young Children Priority One District Chair. Thank you for your tireless dedication to Kiwanis and to serving the children of your communities and the world. We DO MAKE A DIFFERENCE; one child and one community at a time.
Ava Adams, District Chair, 2017-18
Young Children Priority One (Y.C.P.O.)
New England and Bermuda District

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

YCPO - August 2018

Young Children Priority One August 2018 Newsletter



The success of the Ronald McDonald House Charities is due  to the tireless work of volunteers and the countless contributions from  donors. Ronald McDonald House Charities have  been helping improve the lives of children and their families for 37 years.
How it started:
The first Ronald McDonald House opens in Philadelphia thanks to Dr. Audrey Evans, Philadelphia Eagles’ player Fred Hill (whose daughter, Kim, had leukemia), Leonard Tose, owner of the Eagles, Jim Murray, the Eagles’ general manager and Ed Rensi, the McDonald’s regional manager.
The McDonald’s owner/operators in Philadelphia made the House possible, donating proceeds from the sale of Shamrock Shakes.

RMHC makes an immediate, positive impact on children’s lives through their global network of Chapters in 57 countries and regions and through their three core programs: Ronald McDonald House, Ronald McDonald Family Room and Ronald McDonald Care Mobile.




#1Contact your local Ronald McDonald House and have an administrator come speak at your Club.  Find out ways Kiwanis members can help!

#2Prepare and serve a home-cooked meal for families GUEST CHEF’S NIGHT great way too volunteer with club  members go to website to find more information and sign up

#3Plant flowers, or clean up the garden at RMH

#4Bring homemade cookies or cupcakes for families. Or help children bake and decorate them.

#5Help with a “spring cleaning” spruce-up

#6Offer your professional skills to families – give free haircuts, massages, or manicures

#7Organize a craft project for children

#8Answer the phones, greet visitors or do light office work

#9Host a pizza party, ice cream social, or popcorn & movie night

#10Help the RMHC Chapter write a newsletter

#11Hold a food drive (non-perishable items) to help stock the pantry

#12Help your local RMHC Chapter with a golf tournament, auction, gala or fundraising event

#13Organize the Ronald McDonald House’s storage areas, or restock supplies

#14Host a free car wash for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House

#15Host a scrap-booking project for moms

#16Record height and weight for children visiting the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile program

#17Stuff backpacks with school supplies for children who visit the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile

#18Help children illustrate their own storybooks

#19Help decorate for the holidays

#20Lead a yoga, exercise or relaxation class for parents or kids

#21Create a “penny war” at your school to collect loose change for your local RMHC Chapter

#22Hand write thank-you notes to donors

#23Make welcome goodie bags and care packages for families

#24Collect new hotel toiletries and donate them for families

#25Collect new toothbrushes, toothpaste and floss to donate to the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile

#26Sponsor a room at the Ronald McDonald House with your coworkers or civic group. Paint, furnish and decorate

#27Donate your time and talent in accounting, computers or marketing to help your local RMHC Chapter

#28Serve on a committee or board of your local RMHC Chapter

#29Help paint or provide light carpentry and maintenance services

#30Make quilts, afghans or knitted hats and mittens for families

A great fund raising idea is to collect aluminum pull tabs (many Key Clubs are already
doing this!). Clubs can either redeem the tabs and send a check to RMHC or the pull
tabs can be delivered to a local Ronald McDonald House and they will recycle the tabs.

Please share the above ideas with your Key Clubs. They may be interested in some of the specific suggestions  for service opportunities!

There are 7 Ronald McDonald Houses in New England.

501 George Street
New Haven, CT 06511
Ph: 203 777-5683
Fx: 203 777-3082

654 State Street
Bangor, ME 04401
Ph: 207 942-9003  Fx: 207 990-2984

250 Brackett Street
Portland, ME 04102
Ph: 207 780-6282
Fx: 207 780-0198

 229 Kent Street
Brookline, MA 02446
Ph: 617 734-3333
Fx: 617 734-5239

34 Chapin Terrace
Springfield, MA 01107
Ph: 413 794-5683
Fx: 413 794-8199

Rhode Island
 45 Gay Street
Providence, RI 02905
Ph: 401 274-444
Fx: 401 751-3730

16 South Winooski Avenue
Burlington, VT 05401
Ph: 802 862-4943
Fx: 802 862-2175

If your Kiwanis Club is located near a Ronald McDonald House, I hope you will get involved in helping support the RMHC. It’s all about helping and serving children and their families.  Let’s show our Kiwanis’ hearts and just do it!

Ava Adams, District Coordinator
Young Children Priority One
Scarborough, Maine Kiwanis Club
New England and Bermuda District
email: faithava2008@yahoo.

Monday, July 2, 2018

YCPO - July 2018

July, 2018 YCPO Newsletter


SIDS is the leading cause of death among babies between 1 month and 1 year of age.

More than 2,000 babies died of SIDS in 2010, the last year for which such statistics are available.

Most SIDS deaths occur when in babies between 1 month and 4 months of age, and the majority (90%) of SIDS deaths occur before a baby reaches 6 months of age. However SIDS deaths can occur anytime during a baby's first year.

SIDS is a sudden and silent medical disorder that can happen to an infant who seems healthy. 

Slightly more boys die of SIDS than do girls.

SIDS rates for the United States have dropped steadily since 1994 in all racial and ethnic groups. Thousands of infant lives have been saved, but some ethnic groups are still at higher risk for SIDS.

Information provided by the Mayo Clinic

Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the unexplained death, usually during sleep, of a seemingly healthy baby less than a year old. SIDS is sometimes known as crib death because the infants often die in their cribs.
Although the cause is unknown, it appears that SIDS may be associated with abnormalities in the portion of an infant's brain that controls breathing and arousal from sleep.

Researchers have discovered some factors that may put babies at extra risk. They've also identified some measures you can take to help protect your child from SIDS. Perhaps the most important measure is placing your baby on his or her back to sleep.


Physical factors

   •    Brain abnormalities. Some infants are born with problems that make them more likely to die of SIDS. In many of these babies, the portion of the brain that controls breathing and arousal from sleep isn't yet mature enough to work properly.
   •    Low birth weight. Premature birth or being part of a multiple birth increases the likelihood that a baby's brain hasn't matured completely, so he or she has less control over such automatic processes as breathing and heart rate.
   •    Respiratory infection.  Many infants who died of SIDS had recently had a cold, which may contribute to breathing problems.

Sleep environmental factors

   •    Sleeping on the stomach or side. Babies who are placed on their stomachs or sides to sleep may have more difficulty breathing than those placed on their backs.
   •    Sleeping on a soft surface. Lying face down on a fluffy comforter or a waterbed can block an infant's airway. Draping a blanket over a baby's head also is risky.
           Sleeping with parents. While the risk of SIDS is lowered if an infant sleeps in the same room as his or her parents, the risk increases if the baby sleeps in the same bed — partly because there are more soft surfaces to impair breathing.

The AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) recommends that  the baby sleep in the parent’s room at night for at least the first six months and ideally for the first year. Positioning the crib, bassinet, or play yard close to the bed allows one to easily reach the baby for nighttime feeding and comforting.

Risk factors

Although sudden infant death syndrome can strike any infant, researchers have identified several factors that may increase a baby's risk. They include:
   •    Sex. Boys are more likely to die of SIDS.
   •    Age. Infants are most vulnerable during the second and third months of life.
   •    Race. For reasons that aren't well-understood, black, American Indian or Alaska Native infants are more likely to develop SIDS.
   •    Family history. Babies who've had siblings or cousins die of SIDS are at higher risk of SIDS.
   •    Secondhand smoke. Babies who live with smokers have a higher risk of SIDS.
   •    Being premature. Both being born early and having low birth weight increase your baby's chances of SIDS.

Maternal risk factors

During pregnancy, the risk of SIDS is also affected by the mother, especially if she:
   •    Is younger than 20
   •    Smokes cigarettes
   •    Uses drugs or alcohol
   •    Has inadequate prenatal care

29th March 2018 – Babies who die from SIDS are more likely to have rare genetic mutations that cause them to have weaker breathing muscles, according to a new study.

It is not known why some babies die suddenly from SIDS, but babies being unable to regulate their breathing is thought to be an important condition.
The latest research suggests a possible genetic element to the disorder.
However, the researchers stress that further investigations are needed to understand the link, and whether medication might be suitable to prevent baby deaths.

   •    Educate the public  by distributing this information at Health Fairs, Pediatrician's Offices, OB/GYN Offices, Urgent Care Facilities,  Day Care Providers etc. 

Copy and paste the following in your browser. You will find a brochure on SIDS available from KPTI for distribution to the public.


AvaAdams, District Coordinator 
Young Children Priority One (Y.C.P.O.) 
New England and Bermuda District of Kiwanis 

Monday, June 4, 2018

YCPO - June 2018

 June, 2018 YCPO Newsletter

Fact: Autism affects one in 68 children each year including 1 in 42 boys and their families.

Fact:  Down syndrome is the most commonly occurring chromosomal condition. One in every 691 babies in the United States is born with Down syndrome.



Autism is becoming a global problem; more children will be diagnosed with Autism this year than AIDS, diabetes and cancer combined. Autism is the fastest growing developmental disorder in the U.S. Early detection means earlier access to intervention during sensitive brain development. Most children today are diagnosed between the age of 3 and 6 rears. Approximately 75% to 86% of those children who receive early intervention services between the ages of 2 and 7 will develop some form of functional communication by age 9. It would be most beneficial to the child if diagnosis were to occur by 18 months of age. By detecting and diagnosing these disorders early on, intervention can be initiated earlier and positive results can occur. Cost of lifelong care can be reduced by 2/3 with early diagnosis and intervention. The U.S. cost of autism over the lifespan is about $2.4 million for a person with an intellectual disability, or $1.4 million for a person without intellectual disability
The latest look at autism in the U.S. shows a startling 30 percent jump among 8-year-olds diagnosed with the disorder in a two-year period, to one in every 68 children  (including 1 in 42 boys) will be diagnosed with this disorder.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which did the survey, says the numbers almost certainly reflect more awareness and diagnosis of kids who would have been missed in years past.

“The number of children diagnosed with autism continues to rise,” the agency’s Dr. Coleen Boyle told reporters.
But the CDC noted that the numbers vary greatly from state to state, and it did not use a nationally representative sample, but a look at groups of children in 11 states.

There is NO link between autism and childhood vaccines, a major new study finds.
The systematic international review, first of its kind, conducted by University of Sydney researchers
“No statistical data to support a link between vaccines for measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough and the development of autism or autism spectrum disorders.”


•   CONTACT the Autism Spectrum Disorder Foundation ( for materials to distribute to pediatricians, clinics, parenting classes etc.  Autism rates today are 3 to 4 times higher than 30 years ago. It is imperative that we increase public awareness of the effects of autism on individuals and families. EDUCATE THE PULBIC!

•   SUPPORT Camp Scholarships (run by ASDF)  which allow autistic children the opportunity to explore new horizons and develop social skills. 


Julia is the newest friend to join Elmo, Big Bird and the "Sesame Street" family in a new program designed to spread awareness about children with autism.
The bright-eyed and cheerful little girl plays an essential role in Sesame Street and Autism: See All in Amazing Children, an initiative launched to promote awareness about autism.
One in 68 U.S. children has an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), according to a report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A 2014 report by the CDC estimates that 1 in 42 boys has autism, 4.5 times as many as girls (1 in 189).
The Sesame Street and Autism: See All in Amazing Children program is available as an app and on desktop. It includes daily routine cards and resources to help family, friends and others who encounter children with autism.
Sesame Workshop partnered with 14 other organizations, including the Yale Child Study Center and Autism Speaks, on the initiative.


 Down syndrome occurs when some or all of a person’s cells have an extra full or partial copy of chromosome 21. This additional genetic material alters the course of development and causes the characteristics associated with Down syndrome.
There are more than 400,000 people living with Down syndrome in the United States in people of all races and economic levels.
The incidence of births of children with Down syndrome increases with the age of the mother. But due to higher fertility rates in younger women, 80% of children with Down syndrome are born to women under 35 years of age.
 People with Down syndrome have an increased risk for certain medical conditions such as congenital heart defects, respiratory and hearing problems, Alzheimer's disease, childhood leukemia, and thyroid conditions. Many of these conditions are now treatable, so most people with Down syndrome lead healthy lives.

1   Donate
2   Shop NDSS
3   Partner
4   Attend an Event
5. Organize a Buddy Walk Event
•   The Buddy Walk was established in 1995 by the National Down Syndrome Society to celebrate Down Syndrome Awareness Month in October and to promote acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome. Today, the Buddy Walk program is supported nationally by NDSS and organized at the local level by parent support groups, schools and other organizations and individuals.
•   Over the past sixteen years, the Buddy Walk program has grown from 17 walks to nearly 300
across the country and around the world. Last year alone, 285,000 people participated in a Buddy Walk! They raised more than $11.2 million to benefit local programs and services as well as the national advocacy initiatives that benefit all individuals with Down syndrome.
•   The Buddy Walk is a one-mile walk in which anyone can participate without special training. It is an inspirational and educational event that celebrates the many abilities and accomplishments of people with Down syndrome. Whether you have Down syndrome, know someone who does, or just want to show your support,  join a Buddy Walk in your local community!


Support a Parenting Fair

Initiate a Home Support  Visitation Program for Pregnant/New   Moms

Start A Family Resource Library

Support Childbirth Classes either financially or with educational  materials

I hope that your Club can find one new project to do from all the information  I am including in my newsletters. If one new YCPO Project is done, then I have achieved my goal.  Of course I hope we all do more! We have lots of work to do;  let's  just do it!

Ava Adams, District Coordinator
Young Children Priority One (YCPO)
New England and Bermuda District of Kiwanis

Friday, May 4, 2018

YCPO - May 2018

May, 2018 YCPO Newsletter

Good Morning fellow Kiwanians!

Fact: Every year 60% of drownings occur in rural lakes, ponds and gravel pits.

Fact: Preventable injury is the number one killer of children in most developed countries.

Fact: In a single year more than 14 million children in the U.S. are injured seriously enough to require medical treatment.

Fact: Heat is much more dangerous to children than it is to adults. When left in a hot vehicle, a young child’s core body temperature can increase three to five times faster than that of an adult, which can cause permanent injury or even death. (“Children In And Around Cars”


It only takes one accident to permanently injure or kill a child. That is why parents and children need safety education. In the United States alone, several thousand children age 4 and under die each year because of accidental injuries. Forty-five times that number are hospitalized. The leading causes of death for children 1 to 4 years old are motor vehicles, fires/ burns, drowning, choking, poisonings and falls. When a serious accident does occur, special expertise and equipment may be needed to save the child’s life. That is why a pediatric trauma center should be linked to every community. Now that summer is quickly approaching, there are many potential projects that can be done to educate the public and help prevent injuries while kids are enjoying their summer vacation.


The Home Safety Checklist Brochure is designed to help protect family members from unintentional injuries. It is designed to be an easy room-to-room survey that will quickly point out dangers that need to be changed immediately. It covers the kitchen, basement and garages, outdoor play areas, bathroom, child's bedroom, play areas, windows, stairs and railings, electrical outlets, and fixtures, and general living areas.


Distribute this brochure to Pediatricians, Clinics, Day Care Center,

Health Fairs, Pre-school Programs, Health Department, Hospitals that offer Prenatal Classes or New Mom Classes.


This brochure covers tips for open water safety: never swim in drainage ditches, what to do in an emergency situation if a child is struggling in the water or if a child is unconscious in the water etc.

Distribute this brochure to schools, day care centers, Fire/Police Departments, Fishing Derby, any organized family day sponsored by Kiwanis, pool supply stores, public beach concession stands.

Set up a car seat program***

Kiwanis clubs can make sure that safety seats are available to everyone in the community by setting up a car seat loan program. This involves purchasing or securing donations of new car seats, establishing a location (car dealership, hospital, police station) from which the seats will be loaned or given, establishing the criteria for providing a seat to a family and making sure the people handing out the car seats have the training to install them properly.

Educate the community about scald burns***

Smoke Alarm Safety

One-third of the smoke detectors installed in houses don’t work. If a fire occurs, they won’t make a sound, because most smoke alarms still contain their original batteries. A simple project can solve this problem: an annual campaign for everyone to check the batteries in their smoke detectors. This can involve ads in the local paper or distribution of fliers. This campaign can be expanded to include distribution of batteries and smoke detectors in neighborhoods.

Distribute Choke-Test Tubes

An adult learns about an object by looking at it. A young child learns about it by putting it in his mouth. Telling a toddler to stop putting objects in his mouth has little or no effect. The proper safety precaution is to make sure the child doesn’t play with toys on which he could choke, and there is a device—called a choke- test tube—that helps parents determine this. If a toy or the

smallest piece of a toy fit inside the tube, it is unsafe for children age 3 and under. The federal government has established a size for safe toys for kids under 3: A small part should be at least 1.25 inch diameter and 2.25 inch long. Any part smaller than this is a potential choking hazard. When parents shop for a toy, they need to make sure it has no parts smaller than these dimensions. Inexpensive,

clear plastic tubes that parents can use to test small parts are available from stores specializing in children’s toys and furnishings. A toilet paper roll or other empty cardboard tube would also work to test toys if a choke-test tube is unavailable. Distributing the tubes and educating parents could be a project by itself, or it could be part of a parenting fair.

Support A Pediatric Trauma Program

KIWANIS PEDIATRIC TRAUMA INSTITUTE (KPTI) is supported by the Kiwanis Foundation of New England and other sponsors. Materials are available from KPTI which deal with prevention. ***materials available from KPTI

Other safety brochures available from KPTI

Window Safety

Summer Safety

Pedestrian Safety

Water Safety

Holiday/Winter Safety

Fire Safety

After School Safety

Poison Information

Car Safety In And Around Cars

Nearly 10% of motor vehicle related deaths DO NOT occur on public highways or in vehicular accidents or traffic, but happen in parking lots, driveways or when children are left unattended in vehicles. This is a serious public health issue and these deaths are totally preventable.


From 1998 to 2010, more than 494 children – most of them 2 years old and younger – died from heat stroke after being left or becoming trapped in a car.

These deaths fall into three main categories: children who were trapped while playing in a vehicle without supervision; children who were accidentally left behind; and children who were intentionally left alone in a car.

Leaving a child in a vehicle for a “quick” errand is a huge mistake. A delay of just a few minutes on a warm day can lead to tragedy.


Each year almost 2,500 children ages 1 to 14 go to emergency rooms with injuries sustained from a vehicle backing up. On average, another 230 kids in that same age group die, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Danger can come from any direction, and children should never play in driveways, in parking lots or on sidewalks when vehicles are present.


For many kids, a car trunk looks like a fun place to play or hide. Tragically, many families have discovered that kids can get in but they can’t always get out. A trunk can be deadly for an unattended child.

Children can access trunks in several ways, even without having the vehicle’s keys. Most cars have a lever or button located near the driver’s seat that pops the trunk open, while other cars also have fold-down seats or a “pass through” that enables children to climb into the trunk from the back seat. Always lock all

vehicle doors. For more information, a brochure and checklist for parents, go to

Kiwanis Clubs can help by increasing public awareness of problems of children and car safety

– distribute information at grocery stores, to childcare centers, pediatrician’s offices etc.

I hope there is at least one project that motivates you to do more for our children to promote safety in our communities. Imagine the lives and money we could save by promoting prevention education to parents and families. With the high cost of hospitalization, insurance and emergency room care today in the U.S. we could all do

our part to educate parents to keep their children safe and possibly lower rising health care costs.

Please remember that without the support of the Kiwanis Foundation of New England the Kiwanis Pediatric Trauma Center Programs could not function.

So I hope your Club will consider making a donation to the KFNE, and if you wish the money to go to KPTI you can indicate “KPTI” on the memo line of your check. Kiwanis Clubs need to support these programs if we wish them to continue.

Kiwanis Foundation of a New England
P.O. Box 2307
Westfield, MA 01086


Ava Adams, District Coordinator
Young Children Priority One (YCPO)
New England and Bermuda District email:

Saturday, April 7, 2018

YCPO - April 2018

Good Morning fellow Kiwanians!

According to data from the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS), 49 States reported a total of 1,585 fatalities.
Nationally it is estimated 1,670 children died from abuse or neglect in 2015, which is 5.7 percent more than in 2011. This translates to a rate of 2.25 children per 100,000 children in the general population and an average of nearly five children dying every day from abuse or neglect

Three-quarters (74.8 percent) of child fatalities in 2015 involved children younger than 3 years, and children younger than 1 year accounted for 49.4 percent of all fatalities. 

 In 80% of child abuse and neglect cases, the alleged abusers are overwhelmed, stressed parents who took their frustrations out on their own children; in other cases child abuse results because some parents were abused as children and never learned how to be a good parent. 

In the United States, April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. A Kiwanis club could assist local events for Child Abuse Prevention Month in a variety of ways: 

• Recognition event. Hold a luncheon, dinner, award ceremony or other event to publicly thank child protection workers, foster parents, a media personality or others who have made a significant contribution to preventing child abuse.

• Publicity. Send press releases to local radio and television stations.
• Proclamation. Work with the sponsoring organization to have government leaders issue 
proclamations supporting Child Abuse Prevention Month.
• Church events. Contact places of worship and propose that they set aside a weekend to 
celebrate children and families. Suggest a sermon or discussion on disciplining without shouting or spanking, reaching out to parents having difficulty with their children or the importance of positive parenting for physical, emotional and spiritual good health. 
• Blue ribbon campaign. Urge everyone in the community to wear a blue ribbon during April, to show that they know child abuse is an important problem. If appropriate, make the wearing of the blue ribbon a reminder of a child in the community who died from child abuse during the past year. 
• Kids day. Organize a “Kids for Kids” parade dedicated to children featuring children. 



One of the best ways for a Kiwanis club to effect change in child abuse situations is to work with organizations already addressing the problem. In many countries there is a group dedicated to prevent-ing child abuse through public education, such as UNICEF and the International Society for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect. The United States is fortunate to have chapters of Prevent Child Abuse America in most areas. Using their website,, you can find your local chapter. 


Most child abuse prevention organizations have public awareness materials that they will share with Kiwanis clubs. Rather than starting from scratch, clubs should seek out these organizations and ask permission to use printed and video public service announcements, radio spots or art for fliers and brochures. Some also offer “op-ed” pieces that can be submitted to newspapers 

Below are two additional websites providing current information on child abuse information


This information was sent by former Kiwanis International President Wil Blechman, current Chairman of the Young Children Priority One  Kiwanis International Committee:

 "approximately 1500 of these abused children die annually. Worse, yet, is the torture some of these children undergo prior to death.

Another point to be made  is that in the U.S., more than three million reports are actually called in to the various state investigating agencies. While less than a million of these are confirmed, there is little question in the minds of experts in the field that there are likely a significant number which couldn't be proven but still actually occurred. Furthermore, what reinforces this as a Kiwanis Young Children: Priority One issue in the percentage of child abuse deaths that occur before the age of five.

The information you have provided, as well as that which I've added suggest how much society pays in the future because of what we don't do to prevent problems early in life. Money is wasted because we have adults who can't function normally as a result of childhood abuse and end up in poor health, unable to learn, in jail or simply in situations where they take from society in the form of whatever safety nets are available rather than being able to provide positively to society.”

 I hope your Club will consider doing a YCPO project to help prevent Child Abuse. Every child deserves to be born into a world knowing and expecting warmth, love, nourishment and security. And isn't this what Kiwanis  is all about?

Ava Adams, District Chair 
Young Children Priority One(Y.C.P.O.)
New England and Bermuda District!
email: faithava2008@