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Industry Partnership Grows for Kids SafetyMay 2010


Partners of Equine Guelph’s safety initiative “Play Safe. It’s HorseSense!” image

by Henrietta Coole

Guelph, ON – SSG Gloves announced that it has joined as an industry partner of Equine Guelph’s youth educational initiative, “Play Safe. It’s HorseSense!” – an interactive safety activity for kids within Equine Guelph’s travelling education centre – EquiMania!. Entering into its third year, other partners of the initiative include:

Featured at events like the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, Can-Am All Breeds Equine Emporium and Canada’s Outdoor Equine Expo, the EquiMania! safety initiative teaches kids how to stay safe around horses and on the farm – in the barn, outside and around tractors and other farm equipment.

The fun, interactive scavenger hunt engages kids to be Danger Detectives – investigating a mock horse farm for hidden dangers and hazards. They search for clues with magnifying glasses, and once they have found all of the clues and solved the ‘case’, they earn an official Danger Detective badge.

Danger Detective searching for a clue at EquiMania! image

“Safety around horses and on the farm is mostly common sense,” says Ed James, Founder of SSG Gloves. “If we can teach kids ‘how to use their heads’ when they’re young, it will stick with them. We are pleased to play a role in this important – potentially life-saving – initiative and we hope to contribute some expertise in educating kids about the importance of protecting their hands when handling horses.”

The primary goal of this safety initiative is to reduce the number of tractor- and horse-related accidents amongst youth on horse farms in Ontario. Between 1990 and 2005, 63% of animal-related injuries among youth in Ontario occurred in incidents involving horses. For children aged sixteen and under, machine runovers were the predominant cause of fatal injuries at 46%. Between horses, moving equipment and children, a horse farm can be a very dangerous place.

“I am so pleased to see this partnership growing and gaining breadth,” says Dean Anderson, Regional Director of Western Ontario at Workplace Safety & Prevention Services. “It is refreshing to know that the equine industry is taking responsibility when it comes to keeping kids safe around horses and on the farm. EquiMania! provides us with a unique venue to deliver a critical safety message in a fun, interactive way to kids through its educational initiatives at equine events.”