For the second year, Barringer Road Elementary will be a stop for the “Ride for Missing Children” on June 1. In anticipation of the big day, Karen LaScala, a volunteer with the “Ride for Missing Children,” shared important safety lessons with Barringer students during a special assembly held in the school cafeteria. Joining Ms. LaScala were Central Valley “Ride for Missing Children” riders Jennifer Arcuri, Mary Day, Emilie Huxley, and Colleen Reitz, student Myles Cole and parent Vicky Judd.
ABCs of bike safety
Ms. LaScala began with the ABCs of bike safety:
- A is for air. Always check the bike tire pressure to make riding easier and to avoid flat tires.
- B is for brakes. Keep brakes properly adjusted and in good repair.
- C is for chain. Keep the bike chain well-lubricated and properly adjusted.
These guidelines help keep riders physically safe and ensure their bikes can transport them home. She warned that a broken-down bike can place a young rider in a dangerous situation.
Four steps to stay safe
Ms. LaScala gave students four simple steps to help stay safe when biking or playing outdoors:
- Check first. Ask a parent for permission. That way a trusted adult knows where you are.
- Take a friend. Groups of two or more children are safer than a child alone.
- Tell people, “No!” if they try to touch you or hurt you.
- Tell a trusted adult if anything makes you feel sad, scared or uncomfortable.
She led the students in a group cheer that encouraged them to be in control of their lives:
- I am strong!
- I am smart!
- I have the right to be safe!
Supporting the Ride
The “Ride for Missing Children” promotes child safety and the safe return of missing children by circulating posters, posting information on the Internet, helping train law enforcement and promoting laws to protect children. This year, the organization will carry its safety message to more than 22,000 students in 42 schools across centralNew York.
Keeping kids safe takes money. The organization raises money for the New York/Mohawk Valley branch of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC-NY/MV).
Its main fundraiser is The Ride, a one-day, 100-mile bike ride that stops at schools along our route to bring a message of safety. All participating riders make a vow to raise a minimum of $500 and to support the mission and goals of The Ride and NCMEC-NY/MV.
NetSmartz for more to keep kids safe
The world can be a dangerous place for unsuspecting kids. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the Boys and Girls Clubs of America sponsor NetSmartz, an online resource designed to teach children how to be safe. It addresses topics for younger children, tweens, teens, parents, educators and even law enforcement. It’s secure, age-appropriate and filled with great information.