Veterans Memorial Hospital hosted their semi-annual Safety Day Camp on Thursday, June 13, at the Allamakee Fairgrounds in Waukon. This day camp drew a large crowd of 138 children ages 7 to 14 from throughout Allamakee and Clayton counties for a day long session on how to take responsibility for their own safety, respect parents’ safety rules and share safety tips with their family and friends.
According to hospital personnel, the camp was a huge success, stating the children that attended really listened and watched all of the demonstrations and speakers at the event. They were told to remember all of the safety lessons they learned and to follow them, and to share the safety rules they learned with others, including their parents and siblings.
The children were divided into 10 different groups and spent twenty minutes at each of the ten safety stations. These 10 stations and their instructor(s) included:
- Farm Equipment Safety taught by Waukon High School FFA members
- Lawn Mower/Chain Saw/Weed Eater/Pinch Point Safety taught by Chuck Votsmier, Gene Leiran and Bob Mettille of Veterans Memorial Hospital and Loren Mitchell of Waterville Fire
- Bicycle Rodeo instructed by McKayla Manning, Allamakee County Extension
- Grain Safety/Tug of War taught by Becky Rea, Allamakee County Extension
- ATV/Motorcycle/Bicycle Safety taught by Randy Nordheim, Waukon Power Sports
- Electrical Hazards taught by John Molumby, Allamakee/Clayton Rural Electric Cooperative and Dave Cota of Dave Cota Electric.
- First Aid and First Aid Kits instructed by Betsy Benjegerdes, RN, and Cheryl Livingston, EMT-P
- Internet Safety taught by Liz Hoins, IT, Veterans Memorial Hospital
- Water Safety taught by the Waukon Park and Rec Lifeguards
- Fire Arm Safety instructed by Ross Gerdes, Allamakee County Conservation.
The campers were also all called together at four different times during the day for large group demonstrations. The first demonstration involved a dummy getting caught in a power take off entanglement and another demonstration of a heavy gate and a dual tractor tire falling on a watermelon and what that could mean to a child in that situation.
The second large group demonstration included snake awareness education by Ross Geerdes of Allamakee County Conservation. The third demonstration was on Drone Safety instructed by Clark Mellick, Allamakee County Sheriff. And the fourth large group demonstration included a fly in and tour of the Gundersen Air Med-Link helicopter.
The following local organizations and businesses donated materials, equipment, food, literature or even their employees to help plan and carry out this tremendous safety day camp: Allamakee County Conservation, Allamakee County Dairy Board, Allamakee County Fairboard, Allamakee-Clayton REC, Clark Tire Center, Dave Cota Electric, Future Farmers of America (FFA) instructed by Jessica O’Connor, ISU Extension, Waterville Fire and Rescue, Waukon Police Department, Village Farm and Home, Waukon Implement, Xpressions and the Allamakee EMS Association (Area Ambulance-Postville, Harpers Ferry Ambulance, Harpers Ferry Fire Department, Lansing EMS, Lansing Fire Department, New Albin Fire & Ambulance, Postville Fire Department, Veterans Memorial Hospital Ambulance, Waterville Ambulance, Waterville Fire and Rescue Department, and the Waukon Pioneer Fire Department.) In addition, all of the t-shirts were sponsored by Farmers Business Network.
“This event is such a large undertaking that we could not have done it without all of the help and support of all of these businesses and organizations,” stated Mike Myers, Administrator at Veterans Memorial Hospital. “The instructors were so helpful and informational. We will certainly continue to offer this beneficial program to the youth in our service area every other year.”
For further information on the Veterans Memorial Hospital Safety Day Camps in Waukon, please Veterans Memorial Hospital at (563) 568-3411.