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RoSPA - Thousands of children’s home safety books available for free in Scotland

Thousands of storybooks that help to teach youngsters how to stay safe at home are being made available free of charge to childcare professionals across Scotland.

The Birthday Party, a free book which has been produced by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), can be given to any professional that works with children who are in Primary 3 or younger from this week.

The storybook, part of the Go Safe Scotland initiative to educate children on safety, has been made possible thanks to donations, the largest portion of which was collected at the recent RoSPA’s Occupational Safety Awards dinner.

The importance of teaching home safety to children has been highlighted by NHS Scotland statistics released earlier this year, which show 2,128 injuries to children under five happened in the home. The biggest causes were falls (891) and poisoning (514), which are both issues covered in the book, along with the potential dangers of looped blind cords.

The Birthday Party, written by award-winning children’s author Linda Strachan, follows Jamie and his friends as they prepare safely for a birthday party, including making and decorating cakes, putting on costumes and tidying up after themselves.

Elizabeth Lumsden, RoSPA Scotland’s community safety manager, also raised funds for the project when she, along with son Donald, walked 50 miles of the West Highland Way in April last year.

She said: “The majority of accidents occur in the home, with a high proportion of those happening to young children, so this is a really worthwhile project.

“We would love to see these books being used across the country, as they really help children to understand the message of being safe in the home, and empower them with the knowhow to be able to do so.”

The first story will be followed up by a series of ebooks to explore other areas where children have accidents, the majority of which can be avoided with small changes in everyday behaviour.

George Cairns, chairman of the Go Safe Scotland partnership, said: “We’d like to thank RoSPA for its continued support and in particular for its efforts in producing The Birthday Party.

“The publication of the book adds another dimension to the home safety section of our campaign, highlights important key safety messages for both parent and child, and of course it is a great and entertaining story.”

Anyone wishing to get copies of the book should contact Christie Burnett on cburnett@rospa.com, or call 0131 449 9379, to arrange collection from the RoSPA Scotland office in Edinburgh.

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