Safe Kids Greater Tampa Coalition
St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital is the lead organization for the Safe Kids Greater Tampa Coalition. Safe Kids Greater Tampa leads the Tampa Bay community in preventing childhood injuries in the areas of bicycle, pedestrian, water, home and child passenger safety programs.
Our mission is to prevent childhood drowning and near drowning through public awareness, education and outreach using collaboration and coordination of community resources. Our focus includes access to swim lessons and CPR certification, four-sided fencing around pools, door alarms, and active supervision of children inside the home and in and around all bodies of water. CPR and swim lesson scholarships for families in need are often available through our water safety program.
We educate families on how to protect their children from falls, drowning, burns, poisonings and more, so kids can have the freedom that comes from being active, healthy and safe at home. While there’s no substitute for active supervision, using injury-prevention techniques and products can provide an extra layer of protection and added peace of mind.
Child Passenger Safety
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children between the ages of 1 and 14 in the United States. Florida Child Passenger Safety and Seat Belt Law states all children age 5 and younger MUST be in a child restraint. Children age 6 and over MUST use a seat belt. However, Safe Kids Worldwide recommends keeping a booster seat-age child in a booster seat until they’ve outgrown their booster seat by weight or height. Our goal is to ensure that all children are appropriately restrained in vehicles for their safety. We provide one-on-one car seat inspections and car seat education classes to our community.
Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety
The goal of our bike and pedestrian safety program is to educate, equip, encourage and support students, teachers, families and the community to practice safe biking and walking habits. We educate students at school bike clinics where they learn the rules of the road while on bikes or scooters with assistance from their trained physical education teacher. We equip teachers by training them on-site and providing a trailer of bikes, scooters and equipment for a week to use with their students. We encourage families to walk or bike to school, as well as on weekends, to promote healthy lifestyles, reduce obesity, protect the environment and deepen family relationships. We support the use of bike helmets by providing helmet fitter certifications to community partners such as law enforcement, school resource officers, after-school program staff and teachers. Keeping our BayCare neighbors safe is a priority at the Wellness and Safety Center.