ThinkFirst is a national brain and spinal cord injury prevention, research-based educational program founded by Americaês Neurosurgeons. ThinkFirst is recognized by:
- The World Conference of Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion
- The Journal of Neurosurgery
- The Journal of Emergency Nursing
- Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation
- Paralyzed Veterans of American
The Trauma Prevention Program offers ThinkFirst for Teens, ThinkFirst for Youth and ThinkFirst for Kids educational programs.
The one hour program begins with a film titled –On the Edge” which features open and honest testimonies from trauma victims discussing the narrow margin that can separate fun from tragedy. After the film, a nurse, physical therapist or paramedic gives a brief presentation explaining what injury is and how it affects the brain, the spinal cord, and other body systems.
The most powerful portion of the program is when a trauma victim speaks to the students about his/her injury. The speaker describes how their injury occurred and the physiological, psychological and functional consequences of their injury. Most importantly, the guest describes how their injury has impacted their goals, hopes and dreams and how the injury could have been prevented.
LaDonna Brock is one of the speakers in the ThinkFirst for Teens program. She sustained a spinal cord injury as a result of an accidental gunshot wound. LaDonna and the other guest speakers bring a powerful message to the students regarding risk-taking behaviors and living with the long-term consequences of those behaviors.
Use Your Mind to Protect Your Body!!!
ThinkFirst for Youth is comprised of two formal curricula for grades 4th-6th and grades 6th-8th. Each module features age-appropriate activities, a variety of teaching formats and lessons with increased levels of difficulty to meet the needs of individual classrooms and students. Lessons focus on:
- Pedestrian and vehicular safety
- Bicycle, scooter, skate board and roller blade safety
- Recreational, playground, sports and water safety
- Violence, conflict resolution and risk-taking
These lessons focus on helping students stay injury free by emphasizing skills to withstand peer pressure, develop decision-making abilities and build a confident self image for the development of conflict resolution skills.
A comprehensive brain and spinal cord injury prevention curriculum for grades 1st-3rd with lessons focusing on:
- Brain/spinal cord anatomy and function
- Bicycle and pedestrian safety
- Sports and recreational safety
- Vehicular safety
- Violence prevention
- Water safety
This program is designed to help young children develop lifelong safety habits to lessen their risk for traumatic injuries.
The Trauma Prevention Program also offers the following programs:
Ghost out is a weeklong drug and alcohol program designed to target the teenage population. The highlight of the program includes someone disguised as the Grim Reaper who roams the classrooms to select his next victim. Fifteen –victims” are selected and these victims represent the average number of people killed in alcohol or drug related crashes during a school day. During an assembly, guest speakers address the dangers of driving while impaired. The finale is when a memorial service is conducted for the victims. This is a powerful program that has a big impact on the students.
The Traumaroo safety series is a childhood educational program developed by the American Trauma Society with segments focusing on bicycle safety, playground safety, home safety and staying friends. The target population for this program is kindergarten through fourth grade.
Safety Suitcase for Preschoolers
The safety suitcase travels from one preschool to the next in hopes to install lifelong safety habits to young ones. The safety suitcase includes fun, interactive activities, books to read to the preschoolers and parent information. The suitcase includes safety topics on:
- Helmet/bicycle safety
- Child passenger safety
- Playground safety
- Water safety
- Fire safety
Injury prevention education for the senior population is underway. The program will include fall prevention, safe medication administration, driving safely, and pedestrian safety.
Stand Strong for Life!
Stand Strong for Life is an evidenced-based fall prevention program focused on the older adult community with an overall goal to reduce the number of falls and fall-related injuries in this population.
All programs are free of charge.
To schedule a program contact:
University of Kentucky
Trauma Prevention Program
Kenelle Sweet, RN
Trauma Outreach Coordinator