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.
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.
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
CAN KIWANIS CLUBS DO?
Distribute this brochure to
Pediatricians, Clinics, DayCareCenter,
Health Fairs, Pre-school Programs, Health Department, Hospitals that offer Prenatal Classes or New Mom
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.
•WHAT CAN KIWANIS CLUBS DO?
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
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
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,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 or seminar.
Community About Poisons
The same impulse that leads a child to
swallow a toy may impel him to drink or eat a poisonous substance. Clubs can
help parents through an awareness campaign that reminds them to keep paints,
cleaning compounds, beauty aids and even house plants out of the reach of young
Yuck” stickers can be distributed, so that parents can label poisonous
substances with a consistent warning that they discuss with their children.
Contact the local hospital or poison control center to get the stickers. Finally,
a club could print and distribute copies of a chart that tells parents what to
do if their children consume a poisonous substance. Educational pamphlets on
poisons, designed for distribution in the community, are available from the
National Safety Council at 800-621- 7619, and the AmericanAcademy
of Pediatrics at 800-433-9016.
Pediatric Trauma Program
****KIWANIS PEDIATRIC TRAUMA CENTER
(KPTI) is supported by the Kiwanis Foundation of New
England and other sponsors. Materials are available from KPTI
which deal with prevention.
***materials also available from
Children's Miracle Network Hospitals in Your Areas
A club might consider starting any
number of Young Children: Priority One projects at an area children’s hospital,
and donate the funds raised for it through CMN. (Be sure that the hospital is a
member of the Children’s Miracle Network.) Club members should discuss with the
hospital’s CMN coordinator the possibility of setting up a special Kiwanis
Young Children: Priority One fund, so that the club can have a better idea of
how its funds are affecting the well-being of young children.
The gift of a Kiwanis doll during a
hospital stay can provide comfort and a way for a child to express himself.
Using the provided template, Kiwanis dolls are cut, sewn and stuffed by Kiwanis
volunteers and are distributed to children by medical personnel. Because they
are soft and made of a plain cotton fabric, they can be decorated with markers
by patients to show injuries and to express how they feel. The medical staff
can also use the dolls to explain a procedure or treatment, helping children to
understand what is happening.
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.
NEVR LEAVE A CHILD ALONE IN OR NEAR A
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
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.
PREVENTING TRUNK ENTRAPMENT
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
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 www.safekids.org
Kiwanis Clubs can help by increasing
public awareness of this problem – 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 KiwanisPediatricTraumaCenter
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
on the memo line of your check.
Kiwanis Clubs need to support these
programs if we wish them to continue!
Ava Adams, District Chair 2015-16
Early Childhood Development/Young
Children Priority One