PUBLISHED: 4:16 PM on Wednesday, October 10, 2007
SEARHC awards injury prevention mini-grants
SITKA - The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium Injury Prevention Department has awarded $8,309 in mini-grants to five projects in several Southeast Alaska communities.

The mini-grants were available to community prevention groups, tribal organizations, schools, injury prevention teams, youth groups or wellness coalitions in 10 Southeast communities - Haines, Klukwan, Hoonah, Angoon, Sitka, Kake, Petersburg, Wrangell, Craig and Klawock - who submitted applications in August.

The five selected projects cover a range of projects from boating safety and hunter safety education to the installation of smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, and even violence prevention in the schools.

The five winning projects are:

• Petersburg Rotary Club, $1,200, for "Kids Don't Float" signs and life preservers for local kiosks - This project is for all four access ramps to the harbor and the two boat launches in Petersburg, which serves 587 commercial fishing and 789 registered boats. The Coast Guard Auxiliary and the Petersburg Rotary Club will monitor the kiosks and restock the life preservers as needed.

• Wrangell Public Schools, $3,197, for a violence prevention mediation program -Wrangell schools will teach communications skills, problem solving and mediation skills to 240 students in the third through eighth grades. The mini-grant will reduce conflicts, bullying and court referrals among students.

• Craig Community Association Environmental Protection Division, $200, for a hunter education project - The goal is to provide 20 students in Craig with the opportunity to attend a basic hunter education class, which will promote safety, spark an interest in hunting and the subsistence lifestyle.

• Alaska Marine Safety Education Association (AMSEA), $1,900, for boating safety education displays to be used throughout the region - AMSEA plans to build three copies each of five educational, up-to-date, tabletop displays (15 displays total) on the following topics: personal flotation devices, alcohol and boating, preparation for safe boat trips, boat damage and flooding control, and seven steps to survival.

• Admiralty Research and Development, $2,892, for a smoke and carbon monoxide alarm project in Angoon - Since many homes in Angoon rely on wood stoves for heating during the winter, this program will allow installers to go to individual homes and make sure that alarms have been properly installed and tested for all homes that need them.

"Injuries are the No. 1 cause of hospitalizations and fatalities in Alaska, and injuries are especially high amongst the Alaska Native population," SEARHC Injury Prevention Specialist Evon Nesheim said.

"The goal of injury prevention is to reduce the occurance of the leading causes of injury and injury death: suicide, falls, drowning and motor vehicle accidents."

For more information about the mini-grants, contact Evon Nesheim at 966-8804 or