Elementary Students “Think First” to Prevent Brain and Spinal Cord Injuries
During the 2006-07 school year The Center Foundation distributed over 850 free, safety approved bike helmets thanks to support from the physicians at The Center, Therapeutic Associates, local businesses, The Oregon Bike Ride, Ronald McDonlad House and the Safe Kids Alliance. Children who complete the ThinkFirst curriculum are fitted for new helmets to reinforce their safety lessons. Additionally, The Center Foundation partners with Bend Commute Options bike program for 4th and 5th grader students. Prior to their bike ride, students bring their helmets to their school where trained volunteers assure that the helmets still fit and are worn properly. If the helmet is no longer safe or does not fit, the students trades it in for a new Center Foundation helmet. A special thank you to Dr. Norwyn Newby whose passion for biking and protecting children’s brains and spinal cords, fuels this program.
Bike Safety Brochure
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About the ThinkFirst Program
The guiding principle behind ThinkFirst For Kids is that habit formation and behavior change are more easily assimilated in childhood. The program’s six-week curriculum is designed to make learning fun, yet meaningful, and emphasizes the message that students can have fun-filled, exciting lives without hurting themselves if they "ThinkFirst" and use their minds to protect their bodies.
The program covers six areas – basic brain and spinal cord anatomy, motor vehicle safety, bicycle safety, safety around weapons, playground and sports safety, and water safety – with each section addressing risk factors and the safety behaviors that help prevent injury. Lessons are integrated into multiple subjects, including math, science, reading and language, and each student receives a free bicycle helmet upon completion of the curriculum. Learn more at www.thinkfirst.org.
The need for youth-focused injury prevention education is clear, as trauma continues to be the leading killer of young people in the United States.
More than 22,000 children under 20 years of age die of injuries each year, and about 600,000 children are seen in emergency rooms. An additional 30,000 suffer permanent disabilities.
An estimated 500,000 persons sustain brain and spinal cord injuries annually in the U.S. The most frequent causes of these injuries are motor vehicle crashes, falls, sports and recreation, and violence. Children and teens are at high risk for these devastating injuries, many of which are preventable.
Source: ThinkFirst National Injury Prevention Foundation