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A Day for Global Connections

October 25, 2013

During our Safe Kids Worldwide leadership conference, I spent the day with several of our international partners, who traveled to Washington, D.C. to share and learn about the best ways to keep kids safe.

We have partner organizations in 27 countries around the world, virtually on every continent except Antarctica. The amazing people who lead these programs have unique and extraordinary experiences about what it takes to keep kids safe. They’re people we want everyone to meet so we decided to interview them on-camera.

Great idea, right?

I just wasn’t sure why I was involved. A nerd by nature, I work with computers and don’t usually spend too much time around the international scene. Needless to say, I was totally out of my comfort zone. Turns out, our partners were out of theirs as well – trying to portray the struggles and successes of their work in a language not their own.

But every now and again, being out of your comfort zone leads to something special.

One by one, these incredible leaders explained how they worked with limited resources to establish programs to make children safer. I watched and listened in awe as they talked about educating tribal villagers in rural Uganda on burn prevention, advocating that lawmakers in Vietnam mandate helmet use on motor scooters, or making environmental modifications to sidewalks in San Paolo.

These are programs that teach children and adults about safe school zones and safe walking conditions in areas that don’t have sidewalks, about the dangers of cooking over open flames or how to ensure children don’t wander off and drown in a small amount of water found near their homes.

I cheered with them when they got excited about successes. I was sad when they explained how much work still needs to be done. And I fell in love with their passion and commitment.

The world changes when enough people believe in a cause. And child safety is a cause. If you don’t believe me, take a moment to listen to the people who make it happen around the world so that all children have the chance to grow up to be nerds, doctors, farmers, or whatever they can imagine.