Children's Health Protection
2006 Children’s Environmental Health Excellence Award Winners
This page provides details about winners of the 2006 Children’s Environmental Health Excellence Award. For more information about the awards, details on the Childrens Environmental Health Champion Award winner, and a list of Recognition Award winners, visit the 2006 Children's Environmental Health Awards page.Academic Pediatric Association (APA) (formerly the Ambulatory Pediatric Association)
Fellowship Program in Pediatric Environmental Health
The Ambulatory Pediatric Association (APA) sponsored the Fellowship Program in Pediatric Environmental Health to train pediatricians to become the next generation of physician researchers and academic and clinical leaders in pediatric environmental medicine. The physicians who graduate from the Fellowship program generate new knowledge about environmental threats to children’s health; lead efforts to promote good health and prevent disease of environmental origin; and play a central role in educating medical students, pediatricians, and other health care providers about the special vulnerabilities of children. The Fellowship program is an intensive three-year program that combines didactic training with mentored research and clinical and community advocacy experience, leading to a Masters degree in Public Health. Since it began four years ago, the program has produced six graduates, all of whom are pursuing academic careers in environmental pediatrics. For example, last year, with funding from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, fellows from the Mt. Sinai program developed guidelines for managing lead poisoning in pregnancy. Another six fellows are currently in training at five major medical centers.
The Ashkin Group, LLC
The Ashkin Group is a nationally renowned consulting firm whose mission is to transform the cleaning industry. Using marketplace dynamics, The Ashkin Group works with the supply and demand side (i.e., manufacturers and building owners), along with market influencers (i.e., governments and nonprofits) to drive voluntary changes that reduce the health and environmental impacts associated with the cleaning industry. Working with the Healthy Schools Campaign, a partnership was created with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) to develop a green cleaning program to help children, teachers, custodians, and school staff. The program focused on reducing exposure to toxins through the use of environmentally preferable cleaning products, providing appropriate training, raising public awareness about health and educational benefits, producing policy recommendations, and improving the overall CPS cleaning program. A key output of the program was 10 pilot projects that documented cleaning products being used and demonstrated the feasibility of CPS transitioning to green cleaning. The program resulted in CPS adopting a district wide policy to promote green cleaning and the development of the “Quick & Easy Guide to Green Cleaning” to be published by the Healthy School Campaign that will be distributed to help school districts all around the country.
Coalition for a Smoke-Free Valley (The Coalition is part of the Community Health Department of Lehigh Valley Hospital and Health Network)
Keep Us Healthy Collaborative
During the past three years, the Coalition for a Smoke-Free Valley administered a collaborative grant with Latinos for Healthy Communities and the Bethlehem Health Bureau from the American Legacy Foundation Priority Populations Initiative. The Collaborative used community outreach workers as a peer reviewed approach to educate Latino urban families about secondhand smoke exposure to children and adults and encourage tobacco cessation in the Lehigh Valley area of Pennsylvania. This Collaborative had a significant impact on 1,070 families in Allentown and Bethlehem as a result of door-to-door, secondhand smoke interventions. Thirty one percent of the families, at three-month follow-up, changed their home smoking policy – either eliminating smoking in their home or reducing the number of rooms where smoking is allowed. Twenty one percent changed their car smoking policy, eliminating the practice in their cars. In addition, 14 people quit smoking on their own as a direct result to the Keep Us Healthy intervention. The project showed that brief, face-to-face interventions can be tailored to a particular community, making the project replicable in other areas.
Community Asthma Prevention Program (CAPP)
Community Asthma Prevention Program of Philadelphia
The Community Asthma Prevention Program (CAPP), of The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, was established in 1997 in West Philadelphia. CAPP’s comprehensive asthma program goals are to increase asthma knowledge and improve self-management behavior; to improve quality of life for children with asthma; and to train community members. CAPP currently has four major interventions: community asthma classes, a home visiting program, school classes and training, and primary care provider (PCP) education. Since 1997, 2,000 families have participated in CAPP’s community education program and 670 families in CAPP’s home environmental intervention program. Asthma self-management education is conducted at home and in the community. At both levels families learn about asthma from A-Z. In the community this is taught in small groups by peer educators. In the home, education and environmental mitigation is provided by trained lay educators. CAPP also conducts staff professional training for the Philadelphia School District. To date, 100 school personnel have been trained. In Fall 2005, CAPP began offering classes in schools for children with asthma. Approximately 80 children have enrolled to date. The goal for the PCP project is to equip primary care practices to provide clinical care for children with asthma based on the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) guidelines.
Department of Development, Cuyahoga County
Cuyahoga Lead Hazard Reduction Program
The Cuyahoga County Department of Development has developed a health-based approach to lead hazard remediation for use among the 58 municipal jurisdictions in Cuyahoga County (excluding Cleveland). The program includes the Cuyahoga County Board of Health, creating a partnership that has assisted in increasing capacity for lead remediation work as well as developing education and outreach resulting in significantly lower incidence of childhood lead poisoning. Funding was obtained in 1998 and the task of creating a seamless process was instituted, with the goals of developing a housing rehabilitation contractor base that could ensure lead safe practices were followed and educational materials to educate the public about the affects of lead poisoning. Since inception, over 450 homes have been remediated for environmental hazards and the program now has 30 contractors able to do certified rehabilitation work. In addition, from 1999 to 2004, there has been a 61 percent reduction in the incidence of children with elevated blood levels in suburban Cuyahoga communities.
Emory University School of Medicine
EVA (Emisiones Vehiculares y Asthma) or Vehicular Emissions and Asthma
In order to understand the effect of on-road emissions in asthmatic children in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, the Emory University School of Medicine conducted a prospective study of 200 school-age children (100 asthmatics [diagnosed by a physician] and 100 controls [age and gender matched, from the same schools]) from mid to low socioeconomic status ages 6 to 12 years from January 2003 through December 2003. The results of the study stem from a joint collaboration between the U.S. and Mexico, and utilized expertise and resources available to Ciudad Juarez. These results will pave the way for further use of these pollutant measurements and geographic information system analysis (developed by the University of Juarez) as environmental indicators to protect the health of vulnerable children. The data will be used in collaboration with the EPA to expand their air modeling in El Paso, Texas. This will provide, for the first time, an air model with health effects across the U.S./Mexico border. Results from this research project will be critical for other cities near the U.S./Mexico and U.S./Canada borders that are facing similar air pollution scenarios.
Get the Lead Out! Collaborative
The goals of the Get the Lead Out! Collaborative are to fix hazardous housing; test children for lead and provide treatment; educate parents, professionals, and community leaders; and replicate success. These goals are being achieved through broad-based, facilitated collaboration among 22 partner organizations from diverse sectors. This project has a direct effect on reducing children’s environmental health hazards through the 261 housing units made lead-safe, strengthening public policy, and ongoing training of professionals and parents. The collaborative has made significant progress in its goal of assessing, testing, and treating all children 0–5 years of age. From 2000 to 2004, testing has increased 24 percent countywide (from 8,977 to 11,112 tests, 2000–2004 respectively). Beyond protecting children from lead, the relevance of this project to children’s environmental health is twofold. First, the community coalition model is being replicated in other Michigan communities to address childhood lead poisoning (Muskegon and Benton Harbor). Second, the local community is currently using lessons learned with lead poisoning and retooling them for possible use with other children’s household environmental health issues.
Loyola University Chicago Civitas ChildLaw Center
Lead Safe Chicago
Over 80,000 children were lead poisoned in Chicago between 1996 and 2001. Although the numbers have decreased significantly and Chicago serves as a model statewide, the City leads the nation in the number of children identified as lead poisoned. For these reasons, in 2002, Loyola’s ChildLaw Center brought together city officials and advocates to plan a summit at which stakeholders would develop a strategic plan to eliminate childhood lead poisoning by 2010. Lead Safe Chicago: A Citywide Summit to End Childhood Lead Poisoning, convened in March 2003. The summit—co-sponsored by Chicago’s Department of Public Health and the Center in partnership with EPA, HUD, and CDC—included over 150 stakeholders: community, housing, and children’s health advocates; local, state, and federal officials; parents; realtors; property owners; and representatives of the insurance and financial industries. Following the summit, working groups were formed that continue to successfully implement the objectives and strategies developed, including: generating revenue for loans and grants to assist property owners in making homes lead safe; identifying incentives to encourage them to do so; increasing identification of young children at risk; and raising awareness among families, legislators, decision makers, and the media about lead poisoning and how to prevent it.
National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) Enterprise Community Partners
The Home-Based Child Care Lead Safety Program
From 2003–2005, the National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) and Enterprise Community Partners collaborated to develop and implement The Home-Based Child Care Lead Safety Program. The program’s objectives included conducting lead- and safety-related repairs to 25 home-based child care properties in Rochester and Syracuse, New York, neighborhoods characterized by low income and high risk for childhood lead poisoning, and promoting nationwide implementation of this pilot, including commitment by other cities to replicate the program model in 2005. The NCHH/Enterprise program also changed the National Association of Family Child Care voluntary accreditation standards to include lead safety concerns in safety checklists.
National Environmental Education & Training Foundation (NEETF)
Integrating Environmental Health into Pediatric Health Care
The National Environmental Education & Training Foundation’s (NEETF) Health Care Provider Initiative is a long-term program that takes a strategic approach to incorporating environmental health information into the education and practice of health professionals, with activities in education, practice, and resources/tools. The goal of the initiative is to incorporate environmental health into health professionals' education and practice in order to improve health care and public health, with a special emphasis on protecting children and other populations disproportionately affected by environmental pollutants. This overall initiative includes the Pediatric Asthma Initiative, Pediatric Environmental History Taking Initiative, and National Strategies for Health Care Providers: Pesticides Initiative. Through development of national agendas and strategic partnerships, NEETF is a catalyst for incorporating environmental health into pediatric health care. The outputs of these programs include a variety of tools for health professionals, such as environmental health competencies and practice skills guidelines, and trainings for pediatric health professionals.
Oregon Environmental Council
Providing Caregivers Tools to Protect Children’s Health
The Oregon Environmental Council (OEC) recently launched two innovative programs to provide parents and caregivers with tools to reduce children’s toxic chemical exposure by creating healthier environments.
Tiny FootprintsTM enables new parents to create a healthy home environment. The Tiny Footprints Baby Shower Kit offers information and tools for throwing an eco-healthy baby shower. At http://www.oeconline.org/our-work/kidshealth/tinyfootprints/babyshowerkit , parents can find eco-healthy resources and online conversations on topics of shared interest. More than 1,000 unique individuals have visited the website each month since its launch last fall, and OEC has distributed more than 3,000 brochures and 500 baby shower kits.
Eco-Healthy Childcare is designed to improve the environmental health of childcare facilities by recognizing childcare providers who take steps to reduce the presence of potential environmental health threats. Childcare providers qualify as Eco-Healthy if they can meet 20 of 25 items on a best practices checklist. Qualifying facilities receive a colorful sticker and poster that demonstrate their commitment to being Eco-Healthy. Since September, OEC has received requests for nearly 400 checklists and over 65 childcare providers, serving over 1,500 children across the state, have already qualified as Eco-Healthy.
The University of Georgia College of Family and Consumer Sciences
Georgia Radon Education Program
The Radon Education Program of the University of Georgia (UGA) College of Family and Consumer Sciences began promoting radon awareness in 2003. Radon gas, the second-leading cause of lung cancer, kills approximately 600 Georgians per year. Radon education programs are held to teach consumers about radon, and how to test, diagnose, and correct home radon problems. From March 2003 to November 2005, UGA has conducted over 600 formal and informal programs with 28,408 face-to-face contacts; conducted 122 exhibits, with 45,748 face-to-face contacts; distributed 15,972 radon test kits; made 102,384,441 media impressions; and participated in the National Radon Poster Test Contest. The UGA education outreach program focuses on homeowners, children, and caregivers; citing that home exposure is the most significant source of radon exposure and children are more susceptible to the effects of radon due to body size and breathing level. UGA research indicates that in Georgia, approximately 1 in 5 returned test kits show elevated radon levels; the national average is one in 15. The program has been successful in increasing adoption rates of radon-resistant building and reducing health care costs and radon-induced lung cancer risk for 125 households who mitigated as a result of the program.
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) - School of Public Health, Center for School and Community Health Education
The overall goal of the ToxRAP™ Education Program is to empower K-9th grade students and their parents, as well as teachers, to make informed decisions about environmental health problems. The ToxRAP™ Education Program includes a curriculum series for classroom implementation and website activities that support parental involvement. The foundation of the ToxRAP™ Education Program utilizes concepts from toxicology and risk assessment to teach applied science. The curriculum objectives are to have students learn to identify a problem, gather information, form a hypothesis, conduct experiments, make observations, collect and analyze data, draw conclusions and defend their conclusions based on scientific evidence. Website activities extend the curricula to the home by having parents and their children conduct educational activities and games together that build on the classroom experience. The website activities utilize advanced multimedia technology to engage the family and enhance the learning experience. UMDNJ has established partnerships at the local and national levels to enhance dissemination. More than 4,300 teachers in 23 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico, have received training on the curriculum, impacting over 86,000 students. The program has been supported by NIH NIEHS and NCRR; USEPA; CDC ATSDR; and various corporations and foundations.
West Virginia Division of Tobacco Prevention
West Virginia Clean Indoor Air Program
The goals of the Division of Tobacco Prevention’s (DTP) Clean Indoor Air (CIA) Program are based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Best Practices for Tobacco Prevention and the West Virginia Healthy People 2010 goals. These include: increase the number of counties covered by CIA regulations to 52; protect the public and workers from secondhand smoke by increasing to 30 the number of counties that require 100 percent smoke-free restaurants through implementation of clean indoor air regulations; and increase to 70 percent the number of homes with children where a voluntary policy prohibits smoking anywhere inside the home.
DTP offers several projects to protect children from secondhand smoke. The Smoke-Free Initiative of West Virginia provides technical assistance to any county or state-level agency and private employers to increase protection from secondhand smoke. DTP has also created a network of 10 Regional Tobacco Prevention Coalition Coordinators who devote 40 percent of their efforts to smoke-free issues. DTP’s promotion of the EPA Smoke-Free Homes campaign has resulted in the collection of over 11,000 pledges. DTP also supports the WV Raze Campaign (youth empowerment tobacco prevention program), which includes smoke-free issues in media events and encourages teens to be tobacco-free.