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Safe Kids Lee/Collier Counties launches website

By Staff | Jan 13, 2012

Parents, educators and safety professionals now have access to up-to-date child safety information on a range of topics thanks to a new website.

Safe Kids Lee/Collier Counties launched its site last month to serve as a resource for people with children and people who work with children. It took about three months to create the site, the group’s coordinator Rick Virdinlia said.

The group, whose lead organization is The Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida at Lee Memorial Health System, focuses on reducing child injuries.

“Safe Kids is working to prevent unintentional injuries of children between the ages of 0 and 14,” Virdinlia said.

Some topics covered on the site are child passenger safety, burn and scald safety, gun safety, drowning prevention and pedestrian and bicycle safety.

“Those are the risks we’re really focusing on in the Lee-Collier counties,” he said, adding that some information on the site is even broken down by age.

“It’s a gateway to the information that parents need for those risk areas and others,” Virdinlia said.

The website also includes a calendar of upcoming events, like car seat safety inspections, bike helmet fittings and safe pool parties. The events are free.

In addition to launching the site, Safe Kids Lee/Collier Counties also joined the social networking world with Facebook and Twitter. The organization will use the resources to inform the technologically-savvy crowd of new information.

“Social networking is very important,” he said. “That is where the younger parents are going to get their information from.”

Up and running for about three weeks, the site has generated some public interest. Virdinlia said a Highlands County woman contacted the group asking where she could find a car seat safety inspection in her area for her child.

“It is becoming a resource,” he said, adding that the organization directed the woman to someone in her area that could help.

“This website, along with Safe Kids Lee-Collier Counties, should be a starting point for any parent, educator, safety professional,” Virdinlia said.

Part of Safe Kids USA and Safe Kids Worldwide, the local group works with schools, the health department, companies and citizens, and other hospitals. Created in 1995, it has been led by the local children’s hospital since 2009.

Safe Kids was founded in 1987 and currently has members in 21 countries. There are more than 600 chapters and coalitions in the United States.

For more information, visit online at: www.SafeKidsLeeCollier.org.

The Facebook page is: www.facebook.com/pages/Safe-Kids-LeeCollier-Counties/141208995967974. The Twitter is: twitter.com/SafeKidsLee.