News from Upstate

August 31, 2010
Doretta Royer 315 464-4833

Upstate to give away free bike helmets at State Fair

PedsHelmets_detailSYRACUSE, N.Y. — Children’s bicycle helmets will be given away free of charge at the Upstate Medical University/Upstate University Hospital exhibit at the New York State Fair Saturday, Sept. 4, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Science and Industry Building on the New York State Fairgrounds.

The helmet giveaway is an activity of the Pediatric Neurosurgery Helmet Giveaway campaign, created last year by Zulma Tovar-Spinoza, M.D., to encourage children and parents to become excited about and aware of the importance of wearing helmets while riding bicycles. Tovar-Spinoza, director of pediatric neurosurgery at Upstate University Hospital and the Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital, created the campaign in cooperation with the Upstate Trauma center.

According to Tovar-Spinoza, the campaign was created to make sure that children walk away not only with a free helmet but also with a good education about helmet safety.

“The most important issue is not to give helmets away but to educate and make parents and children aware of how helmets can save their lives,” said Tovar-Spinoza. “Helmets are a ‘cool’ device that can protect your brain from severe injuries.”

The helmets will be given on a first-come, first-served basis, but to receive a free helmet each child must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian and receive a brief safety information session in the form of a handout or a verbal presentation.

In addition, the child must sign a “contract for safety” and be fitted for a helmet.

For more information about the Pediatric Neurosurgery Helmet Giveaway campaign or to donate helmets to the campaign, call 464-4418.

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