March 7th, 2007
Inova’s Partnership for Healthier Kids to Educate Parents on Risks of Inhalant Abuse
Springfield, VA – Inova Health System’s Partnership for Healthier Kids has joined with Safe Kids Fairfax to implement a series of parent education sessions on the risks and dangers associated with inhalant abuse. The initiative, led by the Virginia Department of Health’s Division of Injury and Violence Prevention and the Alliance for Consumer Education, will focus on middle school-aged children.
“Alarmingly, past 30-day use of inhalants by Virginia eighth graders is twice the national average according to results from the 2005 Virginia Community Youth Survey,” says Regla Armengol, prevention program manager, Inova Partnership for Healthier Kids. “As we observe National Inhalants and Poisons Awareness Week March 18-24, our goal is to educate parents and let them know that their child may be at risk. Parents and community members need to learn about inhalants to protect our children and youth from potentially life threatening consequences.”
Inhalants are common household products whose vapors, when intentionally inhaled, are dangerous poisons and toxins that can cause sudden death or significant damage to the brain and other organs.
“Inhalants tend to be the first drug of choice for children,” says Armengol. “If we can stop kids from abusing common household products we can potentially prevent further substance abuse before it ever happens.”
The coalition is currently seeking school partners that will host parent education meetings at their schools during the months of April or May. For further information, please contact Regla Armengol at 703-321-1979 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Safe Kids Fairfax is the local chapter of Safe Kids Worldwide, which consists of more than 450 coalitions in 16 countries that bring together health and safety experts, educators, corporations, foundations, governments and volunteers to educate and protect families.