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Kohl's, Madison Fire Department Continue Quest to Keep Kids Safe

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Kohl's, Madison Fire Department Continue Quest to Keep Kids Safe

Madison, Wisconsin – The long-standing partnership between American Family Children's Hospital and Kohl's Department Stores has helped the hospital develop a robust child-safety program through the Safe Kids Madison Area Coalition.

The Kohl's Injury Prevention Program and the Kohl's Safety Center at the hospital provide parents a bevy of safety information on a wide range of topics, from the selection, installation and proper uses of car seats to instructions on correctly fitting a child’s helmet for a safe bike ride or trip around the block on roller blades.

"None of this would be possible without our partners," said Nan Peterson, director of Child Health Advocacy at American Family Children's Hospital. "Because of the Kohl's Cares program's commitment to kids' health and education, we are aided in our mission to keep kids safe."

The department store made its annual contribution to the hospital during a news conference Oct. 23, donating $114,092 through its Kohl's Cares program. In all, Kohl's has donated $1.3 million to American Family Children's Hospital and more than $208 million nationwide to help promote child health, education and safety initiatives.

Members of another Safe Kids Madison Area Coalition partner, the Madison Fire Department, were on hand for the ceremony and took a message of safety  along with some gifts  to patients and families at the hospital.Todd Pralle, manager of the Madison West Kohl's Department Store, presents a check to Nan Peterson of American Family Children's Hospital for $114,092, along with Madison Fire Department Chief Steven Davis.

Led by Chief Steven Davis, 20 new firefighters  the first class of recruits under the chief  visited patients' rooms and handed out carbon-monoxide detectors to parents.

"It's been an ongoing partnership for a number of years, and we're doing great things in the community between bike helmets, car-seat checks and just general education on public safety. Carbon monoxide is an issue that affects a wide range of people across the country, primarily during the heating season," said Davis, noting the state law that went into effect in January 2011 that requires carbon-monoxide detectors on each level of homes.

"Madison Fire responds to about 50 carbon-monoxide calls a year, typically related to furnaces, hot water heater malfunctions (and) cooking supplies. We work hard to prevent that."

While Moms and Dads appreciated the detectors that will notify them if carbon monoxide  a colorless, odorless gas that is otherwise undetectable  reaches dangerous levels in their homes, the children were more excited to meet the firefighters and loveable mascot Sparky and get their very own red firefighter hats.

The parents and children weren't the only ones learning: While on an elevator during a tour of the state-of-the-art children's hospital, one firefighter pointed out the "Star of Life" logo to the new recruits. He explained that wherever they see the image, they can be sure their stretchers will fit in the elevator.

Date Published: 10/29/2012