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Happy July !

UV Safety Awareness Month

According to the American Cancer Society:

  • Your skin makes vitamin D naturally when it is exposed to UV rays from the sun.
  • Whenever possible, it’s better to get vitamin D from your diet or vitamin supplements rather than from exposure to UV rays.
  • Dietary sources and vitamin supplements do not increase skin cancer risk, and are typically more reliable ways to get the amount you need.
  • It is important to limit your exposure by taking the following actions.
    • Staying in the shade, especially during 10AM – 4PM.
    • Protecting your skin with clothing that covers your arms and legs.
    • Wearing a hat to protect your head, face, and neck.
    • Wearing sunglasses that block UV rays to protect your eyes and the skin around them.
    • Using sunscreen to help protect skin that isn’t covered with clothing.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Spending time outside is a great way to be physically active, reduce stress, and get vitamin D. You can work and play outside without raising your skin cancer risk by protecting your skin from the sun. Protection from UV rays is important all year, not just during the summer. UV rays can reach you on cloudy and cool days, and they reflect off of surfaces like water, cement, sand, and snow.

Some people think about sun protection only when they spend a day at the lake, beach, or pool. But sun exposure adds up day after day, and it happens every time you are in the sun. Even though sunlight is the main source of UV rays, you don’t have to avoid the sun completely. And it would be unwise to stay inside if it would keep you from being active, because physical activity is important for good health. But getting too much sun can be harmful.

Tips to protect children from the sun

Children need special attention. They tend to spend more time outdoors, can burn more easily, and may not be aware of the dangers. Parents and other caregivers should protect children from excess sun exposure by using the steps above. It’s important, particularly in sunnier parts of the world, to cover your children as fully as is reasonable.

You should develop the habit of using sunscreen on exposed skin for yourself and your children whenever you go outdoors and may be exposed to large amounts of sunlight. Children need to be taught about the dangers of too much sun exposure as they become more independent. If you or your child burns easily, be extra careful to cover up, limit exposure, and apply sunscreen.

Babies younger than 6 months should be kept out of direct sunlight and protected from the sun using hats and protective clothing. Sunscreen may be used on small areas of exposed skin only if adequate clothing and shade are not available.

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Fireworks Safety Month

Did you know that fireworks were first invented in ancient China, where they were used for entertainment and as a way to scare off evil spirits? Today, they are a staple in celebrations all over the world, but it’s important to remember to handle them with care. So let’s kick off this month by learning about proper firework safety measures and enjoying dazzling displays of colorful lights in the night sky!

How to Celebrate Fireworks Safety Month

Host a Firework Safety Seminar
Invite a local fire department or safety expert to give a presentation on firework safety. This is a great way to educate others and promote safe practices during Fireworks Safety Month.
Have a Firework-Free Celebration

Instead of setting off fireworks, plan a firework-free celebration with fun activities like sparkler art, glow stick dance party, or a backyard movie night.

Create a Firework Safety Checklist

Make a checklist of important safety measures to follow when handling fireworks. Share it with friends and family to ensure everyone stays safe during the celebrations.

Design Your Own Firework Show

Get creative and design your own firework show using virtual firework simulators or drawing your own designs. This is a fun and safe way to celebrate Fireworks Safety Month.

Volunteer at a Firework Clean-Up Event

Help keep your community safe by volunteering at a firework clean-up event. This is a great way to give back and promote responsible firework use during Fireworks Safety Month.

 

Why We Love Fireworks Safety Month

It promotes safety

Fireworks Safety Month serves as an important reminder to handle fireworks with caution. By following safety guidelines, we can prevent accidents and injuries from occurring. It’s a great opportunity to educate ourselves and our loved ones on the importance of firework safety.

It’s a chance to appreciate the beauty of fireworks

Fireworks are not only fun to watch, but they also hold a special symbolism. They represent celebration, excitement, and patriotism. By promoting safety during this month, we can continue to enjoy the beauty of fireworks without putting ourselves or others in danger.

It brings communities together

Many towns and cities host firework displays during this month, bringing people together to celebrate and enjoy the festivities. By practicing safe fireworks habits, we can all contribute to creating a fun and enjoyable experience for everyone in our community.

5 Ignited Facts about Fireworks Safety Month

Fireworks are a Major Fire Hazard

According to the National Fire Protection Association, fireworks start an average of 18,500 fires per year, including 1,300 structural fires, 300 vehicle fires, and 16,900 outdoor fires. This vital fact highlights how firework misuse can lead to significant damage and underscores the importance of careful handling.

Injuries are Prevalent Each Year Due to Fireworks

Fireworks cause thousands of injuries per year. In 2019 alone, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 10,000 people for firework injuries. The hands and fingers are the most commonly affected body parts, followed by eyes and legs.

Young People are Most at Risk

Children and teenagers are particularly at risk when it comes to firework accidents. On average, children under the age of 15 account for 36% of all fireworks-related injuries.

Not All Fireworks Are Legal

Firework laws vary greatly from state to state, and even within a state, the laws can be different depending on the city or county. Some fireworks that are often sold illegally can cause significant injuries or death.

Even Sparklers are Dangerous

Many people consider sparklers to be harmless, but they burn at a temperature of over 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit–hot enough to melt some metals and inflict third-degree burns.

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Independence Day

Happy Independence Day, America!

Independence Day on the Fourth of July is an all-important American holiday. Take a moment to refresh your memory about the true history of this nation. How did the founders envision this holiday, and what’s special about America’s celebration of freedom?

We think of July 4, 1776, as a day that represents the Declaration of Independence, America’s revolutionary Charter of Freedom, and the document upon which the nation’s founding principles were established. But July 4 wasn’t the day that independence was declared. Nor the day that the Declaration was officially signed.

So what did happen on July 4, 1776?
What this holiday commemorates is the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, by delegates from the 13 colonies. On the 4th, the Continental Congress approved the final wording of the Declaration of Independence. This is the day we celebrate the birth of the United States of America.

Here are more dates to remember:

  • April 19, 1775 was the start of the American Revolution. During the Battles of Lexington and Concord (Mass.), the first shots were fired between colonists and British troops. After these first military conflicts, tension between Britain and her American colonists continued to mount.
  • On July 2, 1776, the Second Continental Congress voted for independence from Britain.
  • Two days later, on July 4, 1776, Congress approved the final draft of the Declaration of Independence, which had been drafted by Thomas Jefferson (back in June) and edited by John Adams and Benjamin Franklin.
  • On July 8, the first public reading of the Declaration took place at the Pennsylvania State House (now Independence Hall) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Later that same day, other readings occurred in Trenton, New Jersey, and Easton, Pennsylvania. Printer John Dunlap made about 200 copies of the Declaration, with the date of July 4. Known as the “Dunlap Broadsides,” these were distributed throughout the 13 colonies.
  • However, it wasn’t until August 2, 1776, that the Declaration was officially signed. John Hancock, president of the Congress, was the first of 56 delegates to sign this enlarged version, writing in big, bold letters.
  • On August 4, 1776, after delegates of the Continental Congress had signed the document, the Declaration of Independence was made official.

 

A number of years passed before celebrations of the Fourth of July became more common. Interestingly, the deaths of John Adams (and Thomas Jefferson) seemed to promote the idea of July 4 as an important date to be celebrated. And it was almost a century later (in 1870) that Congress declared July 4 a national holiday.

What’s really special about America’s celebration of freedom is it was quite different for its time, focusing on the joys of freedom. Many countries have emulated this spirit of celebration ever since.

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