Primary school students with helmets donated to them as part of the Asia Injury Prevention (AIP) Foundation's Helmets for Kids program
US-based multinational Johnson & Johnson donated helmets this week to nearly 7,000 primary school students and teachers at twelve schools in Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, and Dong Nai provinces.
Helmets were handed over to the students from April 16-23 as part of the Asia Injury Prevention (AIP) Foundation's "Helmets for Kids" program.
In each of the provinces, representatives from the local Department of Education and Training, Traffic Safety Committee, Transport Department, Traffic Police, Women's and Youth Unions and People's Committee attended the ceremonies, pledging to coordinate with the schools to ensure high levels of helmet use, AIP Foundation said in a statement.
"The results of Johnson & Johnson's sponsorship last year exceeded our highest expectations," said company spokesperson Sandy S. Lee.
"In total, 49 students and one teacher experienced road crashes, and in most instances, suffered less severe injuries due to the helmet donation. A fourth-grade student from Ha Tinh Province was thrown head-first to the ground in a crash and survived because of his helmet," she said.
According to AIP, the Helmets for Kids program will also conduct studies on helmet usage and traffic accidents, as well as communicate with parents to reinforce the importance of making sure their children wear helmets.
In addition, 32 billboards will be installed at former and current target schools that encourage children to wear helmets.
AIP will donate helmets to more than 3,000 students to 32 target schools during the next academic year.
"Last year, Johnson & Johnson launched our largest Helmets for Kids [initiative] to date with a donation of 11,020 helmets," said Deputy Executive Director of AIP Hoang Thi Na Huong.
"The average rate of helmet use increased from 15 to 98 percent across all 20 participating schools. This remarkable success has compelled us to continue by expanding [the program] to more schools."
Hoang Minh Viet, standing deputy head of Ha Tinh Traffic Safety Committee said many of these schools are located along National Highway 1A, which passes through Ha Tinh, as well as Quang Binh and Dong Nai.
"Proximity to this busy road, low helmet use rates, and weak traffic infrastructure create a dangerous environment for the students," he said.