Dozens of families gathered Saturday at the Midtown Greenway with the goal of entering the school year safely at the first annual Kids Safe Day.
The event, held by Safe Kids and the Gainesville Police Department, gave children free fitted bike helmets, water bottles, backpacks, Kona Ice and information on home safety.
According to Kids Safe Coalition Coordinator Kim Martin, “our goal was to educate families on the dangers and risks in and out of the home, in the funnest way possible.”
Martin explained that the days focus on bike and car safety came from the fact that the most common injuries come from vehicle crashes and rolling sports like biking or rollerblading.
For Victoria Briscoe and her 8-year-old son Grayson, the day was also about coming out in support of the Gainesville police and fire services.
“We came out to thank our civilian heroes,” Briscoe said. “His father is a officer in Jefferson, so he loves coming out to stuff like this.”
Briscoe said that she and her family are, “committed to safety” and that they have a home fire and evacuation plan in place.
Sgt. Kevin Holbrook of the Gainesville Police Department expressed the hope that, like in Briscoe’s case, this event will go a long way toward reinforcing home safety techniques before families become busy with the upcoming school year.
Holbrook also said that events like Kids Safe day provide children and families with positive law enforcement interactions.
“Overall today is about safety, but this is a way for us to provide safety education and improve our relationship with individuals from the community,” he said.
To find out more about Safe Kids, email Kim Martin at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit them on Facebook at Safe Kids Gainesville/Hall County @safeghc.