The mission of Safe Kids Worldwide is to prevent accidental childhood injury, a leading killer of children 14 and under, and has actually reduced the unintentional injury death rate for children within that age range by 45% over the past 20 years.
Founded in 1987 by Children’s National Medical Center, with support from Johnson & Johnson, the organization brings together health and safety experts, educators, corporations, foundations, governments and volunteers to educate and protect families.
This week, April 26th through May 4th, is National Safe Kids Week 2008. It includes research, advocacy for public policy initiatives, advertising, distribution of safety devices and grassroots events through hundreds of Safe Kids coalitions and chapters.
Safe Kids USA has developed a safety checklist on the top injury risks to children and the steps parents can take that will have a major impact in keeping their kids safe. This is an excellent resource to have and to refer to often:
1. Child passenger safety – I ensure that my children under age 13 are and under are properly secured in a back seat of a car for every ride.
2. Car seat selection – I make sure to keep my children in the right type of car seat or booster seat until the adult lap and shoulder belts fit them correctly.
3. Wheel safety – I make sure that my children wear a helmet and other protective gear every time they bike, skate, skateboard, or ride a scooter.
4. Pedestrian safety – I teach my children to cross streets at corners and look left, right and left again before crossing. I also make sure that children under age 10 always cross streets with an adult.
5. Water safety – I always keep my eyes on my children when they are playing in or near water.
6. Open water safety – I always make sure my children wear life jackets when riding on boats or playing in or near open bodies of water.
7. Fire safety and Poison prevention – I have smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors installed on every level of my home and outside of every sleeping area. I change the batteries once a year, and test the alarm every month.
8. Suffocation prevention – I do not place blankets, pillows or other soft items in a baby’s crib. I keep small items such as toy parts, coins, buttons, and beads away from children under age three.
9. Poison prevention – I keep poisonous items, such as medicines and cleaners, locked away and out of reach of children.
10. Fall prevention – I do not let children play on stairs, furniture, balconies, roofs, or in driveways, streets or parking lots.