Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Moser Column:Injury prevention champions recognized

Florida Weekly Dec. 25, 2013
Moser's column this week highlights the recent awards by the Lee County Injury Prevention Coalition.  Kudos to all the award winners.
Dan Moser
Lee County residents and visitors are fortunate in that there are many collaborative and ongoing efforts aimed at making our communities better places to live and visit. One that focuses on a number of different aspects of safety, from falls prevention to traffic crash reduction, is the Lee County Injury Prevention Coalition. Each year, the IPC recognizes individuals, groups and organizations that go above and beyond in their efforts. Congratulations to all 2013 winners.

Lifetime Achievement: David Kainrad
The IPC appreciates all of its members and partners, however some seem exceptionally committed to the mission and vision of a cause. David Kainrad is such an individual. Twenty years ago, prior to IPC’s existence, Mr. Kainrad was instrumental in organizing Lee County’s initial community needs assessment. He worked to bring the right players to the table to discuss health and safety issues of the time. It was confirmed that preventable injuries were our county’s leading cause of injuries and death; from that recognition the IPC was created. While Mr. Kainrad spent time leading this coalition, he more often worked from behind the scenes, providing direction, insight and recommendations to the organization. ppSca When the economy collapsed, taking prevention efforts, positions and entire programs with it, it was Lee County Public Safety and Mr. Kainrad who ensured the community continued to receive outreach and prevention education. Mr. Kainrad’s efforts have most certainly saved lives, the IPC’s ultimate goal. Lee County continues to be a leader and model for the state in injury prevention outreach and education thanks to him.

 Organization: Lee County Metropolitan Planning Organization Among other accomplishments, Complete Streets was first introduced and supported in Southwest Florida via the MPO. Most recently the staff produced an updated bicycle map for the public and was the organization behind the creation and adoption of our first Bike/Ped Safety Action Plan. Along with its members and partners, the MPO has been the primary force in identifying and improving the transportation environment for all users. The MPO’s successful application and award of a highly competitive grant for more than $10 million that will enhance and improve services for thousands of road and path users was a major achievement this year.

Media Partner: Florida Weekly
Florida Weekly has supported multiple prevention efforts throughout the year. It keeps bike/ped matters, senior fall prevention, unsafe driving elimination and other topics important to the IPC on the public’s radar through regular articles and special features. The devotion of space for my biweekly column is another way the newspaper helps promote the IPC’s mission. With so many competing issues to cover it’s difficult for any media outlet to deliver all of the messages it finds important so Florida Weekly deserves recognition for consistently reporting on and supporting many of IPC’s community health and safety initiatives.

Program/Outreach Effort: HealthyLee
HealthyLee is a community initiative working toward a healthier Lee County. It’s an effort focused on promoting health and wellness, workplace wellness, chronic disease prevention and behavioral health opportunities. HealthyLee’s slogan “Choose, Commit, Change” summarizes the objectives of the initiative: that we have the ability to change ourselves by adopting a better diet, participating in healthy activities and eliminating harmful lifestyle habits. HealthyLee has successfully collaborated with Lee Memorial Hospital, the Lee County Health Department and the greater business community to promote these concepts and successfully implement Lee County’s first “Streets Alive!” event.

Sponsor/Partner: Abby Services
This home-health agency is an excellent example of how to meld running a successful business with community service. Not only did Abby Services receive a flawless report from Agency of Health Care Administration, but it also is a leader in a number of community health and safety initiatives. The company partners with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office to deliver the “Car Fit” program, which helps seniors be safer drivers on the road; host home health job fairs; and organize community health fairs. All of these programs have helped make our community safer and healthier.

Citizen Volunteer: Reggie McKinnon
Mr. McKinnon consistently participates in health fairs and safety events, volunteering his time and relaying his story to help make sure other families don’t have to experience the tragedy of hyperthermia. It takes a very strong person to relive a nightmare especially in front of strangers. However, his story, while tragic, is an extremely important one for people to hear. Mr. McKinnon has been doing an amazing job helping the community realize how easily these tragedies can occur.

Professional: Susan Lindenmuth
Ms. Lindenmuth has been a consistent health and safety resource and she has played a pivotal role in making Estero Fire and Rescue a prevention leader in Lee County. If Ms. Lindenmuth isn’t out with Ember (the firehouse’s Dalmatian) educating the children in the community, she’s distributing smoke detectors, car seats, bike helmets, and hosting AED, basic life support and first aid classes. ¦
Until next time, I’ll look for you on the roads and trails.

— Dan Moser is CyclingSavvy instructor/ trainer and program director for Florida Bicycle Association who cycles, runs and walks regularly for transportation.

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