The final numbers are in, and we are pleased to announce that the OTLA Helmets on Kids Campaign has reached another major milestone. When tallying the totals since the program’s inception in 2002, we discovered the happy coincidence that over 25,000 helmets had been donated by OTLA’s 25th anniversary.
Now, we are thrilled to see donations in 2016 bring our grand total to over 30,000 helmets, valued at an estimated $450,000!
The Helmets on Kids campaign is not just about free bike gear– we want to help kids and guardians properly fit their helmets to prevent injury. Most events include an educational component where kids learn how (and importantly, why) to properly adjust the straps of their helmet, and we often send kids home with instructional brochures and pamphlets for their guardians. Parachute Canada has great resources on helmet safety.
2016 saw helmets distributed in Ontario communities near and far. Helmets on Kids events were held as far west as Thunder Bay and to the east in Ottawa and Cornwall. Events took place in Windsor to the southwest and North Bay to the… well, you get the picture. Some of our largest events were held this spring in Simcoe County, the GTHA, and in the London region as well.
On behalf of OTLA, I’d like to extend gratitude to all of the members and community partners who have contributed considerable time, effort, and funds to the success of this initiative. The streets of Ontario will be a safer place for young cyclists this summer – and it’s all thanks to you!
We are incredibly fortunate and grateful to have neighbours who rally together with us in the name of cycling safety for Ontario youth.
MTO Road Safety Achievement Award
In June, OTLA was recognized by the Ontario Ministry of Transportation for the impact of the Helmets on Kids campaign. OTLA Director and Helmets on Kids Committee member Laura Hillyer accepted the Annual Road Safety Achievement Award for Corporate Leadership in Road Safety on behalf of our organization. This honour is a welcome indication of the positive effect we are having on our community, and it inspires our continued dedication to the cause.
In the Media
We are delighted and thankful to see so many media outlets take interest in the campaign this year. Use the links below to check out their articles and videos or use the twitter widget to join the conversation on social media. We look forward to watching this coverage continue next year when we return to equip even more young cyclists!