Kohl’s ‘Growing Up Safe’ program begins second year

Grand Island, Neb. — Saint Francis Medical Center will start its second year of the Kohl’s “Growing Up Safe” program at the Children’s Festival on Sunday, Nov. 11. The Child Safety Department at Saint Francis will register families 1-4 p.m. at the Fonner Park Concourse.

The Kohl’s Growing Up Safe program is a proactive effort to keep children in central Nebraska safer — prenatal through preteen — by delivering important safety information to parents when they need it most.  The free program that provides injury-prevention information personalized and relevant to a child’s age and stage of development.

Participants can register a child younger than 12 years of age, even before the child is born. The program can provide expecting parents with tips on how to purchase a car seat, or information on a safe sleeping surface for the baby. As the child grows, other safety measures will be sent. The tips will be delivered via e-mail or regular mail if the family doesn’t have e-mail access.

“The program offers the most current information that’s the most relevant to parents, grandparents or other caregivers,” said Ann Brunzell, RN, Saint Francis Child Safety coordinator. “Instead of giving them all the information at once, we tried to provide it in smaller amounts in a timely fashion. In most cases, preventing injuries is a matter of knowing what to do --- and what not to do.”

Saint Francis Medical Center has partnered with Kohl’s to develop the program through a gift of $18,852 from Kohl’s Care philanthropic program. Kohl’s sells special Kohl’s Cares® merchandise, including books and plush toys, throughout the year with 100 percent of the net profit benefiting health and educational opportunities for children nationwide. Each Kohl’s Cares ® purchase helps Kohl’s support more than 160 hospital partners nationwide. Saint Francis has received $88,457 from the Kohl’s Cares program since 2006 in support of child safety events.

The Saint Francis Medical Center Foundation also provides funding to help low-income residents purchase car seats and other safety devices along with the education to use them properly.

The focus of the Kohl’s “Growing Up Safe” is to ensure parents, grandparents and other caregivers have the most current information from prenatal through preteen years.

“Through research, we continue to find new and better ways to protect our kids,” Brunzell said. An example is the new recommendation for keeping infants in rear-facing car seats until age 2.

The program tracks the development of each child to provide age-appropriate safety information “Near your child’s first birthday, you’ll receive information about leaving children in rear-facing car seats, based on the new recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics,: Brunzell said. “On their second birthday, we’ll send information on when your child is ready to go forward-facing. We will remind you to make an appointment at one of our bi-monthly free inspection stations to make sure the car seat is installed correctly.”

People can register online at www.saintfrancisgi.org/GUS or by calling Child Safety at Saint Francis Medical Center (308) 398-6584. Posters with mail-in registration cards have been distributed to daycare centers, doctor’s offices and other locations throughout Grand Island. The information is available in English and Spanish.

About Saint Francis Medical Center

Saint Francis Medical Center is a nonprofit faith-based hospital serving Central Nebraska with state-of-the-art healthcare services. A new patient tower was completed in 2007 with 159 acute-care patient rooms, including the Family Birthing Center, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Intensive Care Unit and a 10-bed inpatient rehabilitation unit. Saint Francis also operates a Cancer Treatment Center in Grand Island and Hastings, a Skilled Care Unit and an alcohol and drug treatment center.

About Saint Francis Medical Center Foundation

The Saint Francis Foundation is a non-profit organization created to function in coordination with and support of Saint Francis Medical Center whose mission is to encourage a healthy community through such activities as providing health education programs, informational services and quality medical care without regard to race, religion, age, sex, or ability to pay.

About Kohl’s

Based in Menomonee Falls, Wis., Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) is a family focused, value-oriented specialty department store offering moderately priced, exclusive and national brand apparel, shoes, accessories, beauty and home products in an exciting shopping environment. With a commitment to environmental leadership, Kohl’s operates 1,097 stores in 49 states. In support of the communities it serves, Kohl’s has raised more than $180 million for children’s initiatives nationwide through its Kohl’s Cares® cause merchandise program, which operates under Kohl’s Cares, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. For a list of store locations and information or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit www.Kohls.com.