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Kids learn how to play it safe

Julie Saetre | Aug 30, 2019

Play it safe

Twenty-eight incoming kindergarten students will be safer at home, at school and in their neighborhoods thanks to the Ashland, Ohio, Kiwanis Club.

Community support enabled the club to resurrect its Safety Town program for incoming kindergartners after a 15-year hiatus for the event. With donated funds, members purchased a 50-by-35-foot street-scene tarp to simulate a neighborhood setting, supplies to refurbish existing miniature buildings and create new ones and 10 balance bikes.

Play it safe“These items will be used for many years to come,” says Kiwanian Amy Daubenspeck, Safety Town co-chair.

In June, Safety Town re-opened. Kiwanis volunteers joined members of the Ashland Fire Department, one of Ashland Police Division’s K-9 units, the Red Cross and the Ashland Public Library for a three-day safety-education program. Participating children learned important skills, including:

  • How to read and follow traffic light and sign instructions (red = stop, yellow = yield, green = go) and how to cross the street safely.
  • What to do if their clothing catches fire (stop, drop and roll).
  • How to safely escape a burning home.
  • How to stay safe from poisons.
  • What to do if they are bullied at school.
  • How to treat others with respect.

“The response from the students and parents who participated in the program was overwhelmingly positive,” Daubenspeck says. “The students really took what they learned to heart, and parents have reported them using what they learned in their everyday play. Some have even requested to have Safety Town-themed birthday parties. We have no doubt that next year will be even bigger and better.”

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