“Kohl’s Pedal Patrol” Makes Rochester Safer for Kid Cyclists

Generous $49,954 Gift will Support the Injury Free Coalition for Kids Rochester Site

October 09, 2008

"The donation brings much-needed funding to the program, sustaining its efforts to conduct traveling bike safety rodeos, home safety awareness initiatives and seasonal public safety announcements aimed at children and parents."

Rochester-area Kohl’s associates partnered with Golisano Children’s Hospital’s pediatric emergency doctors to host a special bike safety event for local kids at the City of Rochester’s Harvest Jam from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 5.

The safety event celebrates an important stride in safety efforts to protect Rochester’s children: that day, Kohl’s Cares for Kids® presented a check for nearly $50,000 to Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong’s Injury Free Coalition for Kids program site. The donation brings much-needed funding to the program, sustaining its efforts to conduct traveling bike safety rodeos, home safety awareness initiatives and seasonal public safety announcements aimed at children and parents.

“When it comes to bike safety, it may seem that we harp on the importance of helmets – but this can’t be overstated. They’re so important, that if they were universally used, they could prevent one head injury every four minutes and save one life each day,” said Lynn Cimpello, M.D., who co-directs Rochester’s Injury Free program with Anne Brayer, M.D. Both Cimpello and Brayer are attending pediatric physicians in and members of the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center. “Adopting even small habits can help us make big gains for safety, and that’s why we’re so thrilled to collaborate with Kohl’s to curb these injuries.”

Unintentional injury is the number one killer of children less than 18 years of age in Monroe County, and in 2007 alone, Golisano Children’s Hospital’s pediatric emergency department saw 8,984 injury-related visits. Of those, 265 were child pedal cyclist injuries, to say nothing of rollerblades, Heelys, skateboards and other wheeled-sports.

The new “Kohl’s Pedal Patrol” program will educate children and teens on cycling safety through a blend of media techniques (billboards, public safety messages, etc.), information distributed at health fairs, and hands-on education via traveling summer bike rodeos, which include helmet giveaways, helmet-fittings and safety contests. “We are pleased that Kohl’s understands the importance of creating programs that give back to the community by instruct kids in safety matters,” Brayer said. “Protecting the community’s kids through preventative medicine and education is our mantra here at the children’s hospital – really, at the University of Rochester Medical Center on whole. But we can’t do it without stanch community support.”

The Injury Free Coalition for Kids tackles childhood bike injuries and other local safety concerns, acting like a magnet to draw together neighborhood groups, governmental agencies and others to develop plans and implement prevention activities. Most recent efforts include conducting car seat checks, building safer playgrounds for inner-city neighborhoods, and teaching teens to be more cautious behind the wheel.

The Kohl’s Cares for Kids® hospital partnership program raises funds for children’s health and educational opportunities through the sale of special seasonal gift items located near check-out registers, including CDs, plush animal toys and books. Items cost $5 each and 100 percent of the net profits raised are donated to support children’s initiatives in the market areas served by Kohl’s. The size of the gift varies each year, reflective of how many customers purchased the charity merchandise; Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong benefits from the store promotions at Kohl’s stores located in Henrietta, Greece and Webster.

To celebrate the donation to the Injury Free Coalition for Kids, children brought their own helmets (or use model ones provided by the coalition) to a special bike safety booth at the Rochester Public Market from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 5. The safety event offered helmet-fitting tips and helmet decorating contests. At 1:30 p.m., Matt Lashway, local district manager for Rochester’s Kohl’s stores, presented the donation check to Cimpello and Brayer on stage.

For more information on the Kohl’s Cares for Kids program or on how you can make a gift that also supports safety initiatives to protect Rochester’s children, call the Office of Advancement and Community affairs at (585) 273-5948.

Kohl’s Department Stores
Based in Menomonee Falls, Wis., Kohl’s is a family-focused, value-oriented specialty department store offering moderately priced national, exclusive and private brand apparel, shoes, accessories, home products and beauty in an exciting shopping environment. A company committed to the communities is serves, Kohl’s operates 834 stores in 46 states and has raised more that $85 million for children’s initiatives nationwide through its Kohl’s Cares for Kids? philanthropic program, which support health and safety initiatives at more that 150 children’s hospitals nationwide. The program also includes a scholarship program for youth volunteers, fundraising gift cards for local schools and nonprofit groups, and an associate program to encourage volunteerism.

For a list of store locations and information, or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit www.kohls.com.
 

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