Life isn't always fair.
While Kidsafe is all about the prevention of unintentional injuries in children and assisting parents and other carers of children to identify hazards in children’s environments and advocating for how to keep kids out of hospital... bad things still even happen to really good parents.
Preventable or unintentional injuries are often called ‘accidents’.
Accidental injury can snatch the life of a child whose parents have taken every precaution just as surely as one whose parents simply haven't realised the dangers of growing up in today's world.
Kidsafe believes every parent whose child has suffered permanent impairment or death through accidental injury needs a place to share their story, their pain, loss and any feelings of guilt.
Summer's Day is for those families. It is important to realise that you are not alone, that it can 'happen to anyone'. Together, we can share the hurt inside, and perhaps return some purpose to our daily lives.
Please get involved and please help. Join the Kidsafe Family and donate now.
Churches will offer prayers and support for those parents, siblings and extended families who are still grieving the loss of a child or the permanent disability or disfigurement and suffering of children from preventable injuries.
In honour of Summer Steer who died as the result of a preventable injury who is representing all children who have been injured, disabled or killed.
Each year Kidsafe will highlight a different causal factor but this year - 2015 - is about coin/button batteries.
The day is so called because Andrea, Summer’s mum, is devoted to have her daughter remembered and also to warn other parents. She has given her daughter’s photo and name to the day.
Most importantly, we want this day to bring together a community of people who feel they can share their pain, sadness, guilt and shame in anon-judgmental environment.
While some parents are simply ignorant of possible consequences to hazards, the vast majority of parents are full of remorse and guilt that their child has died or been injured from a preventable injury and are often castigated by society and cannot share their pain. Siblings also suffer horribly when a brother or sister is suddenly ‘gone’ or left disabled and the parents are distressed. These people usually do not get the support they need.
We want to support these parents and siblings and also protect all children and keep them safe from injury.
The day will be held annually on the last day of summer - this year the last day of summer is 28 February.
Kidsafe estimates that one child each week presents with a button (sometimes called disc) battery related injury. Swallowing button batteries often occurs with children under the age of five, however there have been cases involving children up to the age of 12.
Button batteries present a problem whether they are ingested or inserted in an ear or nose; wherever they have prolonged local contact with the body. Damage occurs when the battery charge generates a chemical reaction that causes a localised caustic injury – a burn.
It is vital to detect a swallowed battery as soon as possible because of the nature of the threat involved. Depending on their size, button batteries have a tendency to lodge in the oesophagus (food pipe). Damage can begin after only one to two hours.
If the ingestion is not recognised, the battery can erode through into vital organs, causing catastrophic damage and sometimes death. If parents believe their child has swallowed a battery, they must seek medical attention immediately and not give any food or water.
A significant problem arises when the parent does not know that their child has ingested or inserted a button battery. This is particularly so for children under the age of three years, who are more likely to ingest a foreign body and not be able to tell someone about it. Unfortunately, symptoms can mimic common childhood conditions, with vomiting, drooling and cough.
Parents should take full responsibility when changing and discarding batteries and don’t leave new batteries or the flat batteries within reach of children. Flat or dead batteries still contain enough life to generate an electrical current once ingested.
Keep all batteries and items using button batteries out of the reach of children. Replace items that do not have a screw-down battery compartment.