Missy Braden

“It’s our responsibility to keep our children safe,” said Missy Braden, a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician instructor at Piedmont Newton Hospital. Pictured is Braden showing parents how to use a car seat properly.

COVINGTON — The Newton County Health Department was awarded the 2020 Car Seat Mini-Grant by the Georgia Department of Public Health, Injury Prevention Program earlier this month.

Through the mini-grant, the Health Department and First Steps at Piedmont Newton Hospital work together to provide car seats and education to financially eligible families in Newton County. This program is funded by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety to help ensure Georgia’s children are safe while riding in motor vehicles.

Since 2007, the education, car seats and booster seats provided through the mini-grant prevented serious injury or death and saved over 300 of Georgia’s children who were involved in crashes. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car seats reduce fatal injuries by 71% among infants and by 54% among children ages 1 to 4 years in passenger cars.

Car seats offer the best protection for children in the event of a crash, and they are most effective when installed and used correctly. Nearly three out of every four car seats are not used properly, placing children at unnecessary risk.

“It’s our responsibility to keep our children safe,” said Missy Braden, a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician instructor at Piedmont Newton Hospital. “The Car Seat Mini-Grant is a great opportunity to help our community and help protect our children from serious injuries or death in motor vehicle crashes.”

In Newton County, Braden educates parents and caregivers on how to properly install and use car seats, offers car seat inspections and provides car seats and booster seats to financially eligible families. Through the Car Seat Mini-Grant, agencies supporting Georgia’s counties are working to keep children safe. These programs help families get their children buckled up right, every trip, every time.

For more information about the Newton County car seat program, contact Missy Braden at 770-385-4396 or email missy.braden@piedmont.org. If you would like information regarding other counties involved in the program, please contact the Georgia Department of Public Health’s Child Occupant Safety Project via email at injury@dph.ga.gov or by calling 404-463-1487.

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