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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Today is ASK Day June 21st!

ASK (Asking Saves Kids)

“Is there a gun where your child plays?” Asking this simple question is an important step every parent can take to help their kids stay safe.
About 1/3 of homes with kids have guns, many left unlocked or loaded. Just talking to your child about the dangers of firearms is not enough. Children are naturally curious. If a gun is accessible in someone’s home, there is a good chance a child will find it and play with it. Countless tragedies have occurred when kids found guns that parents thought were well hidden or safely stored.

Tips to Make ASKing Easier

  • ASK with other questions. Include the question along with other things you might normally discuss before sending your child to someone’s house –such as seat belts, animals, or allergies.
  • Use the facts. Over 1/3 of homes with children have a gun. May of those guns are left unlocked and loaded. That is why you are asking — you just want to make sure that your child is safe.
  • Work through groups. Introduce the ASK concept through a group or community effort such as a religious organization or PTA.
  • Don’t be confrontational. Present your concerns in a respectful manner. You are simply trying to make sure your child is in a safe environment. Use the ASK brochure to open the dialogue.
A Real Story:
Mylissa Bellamy - “I used to be a “normal” mom. I used to have a “normal” life. Then one day, everything changed. On January 22, 2010 our eleven-year-old son, Matthew, went home from school to spend the night with one of his best friends.  
Unknown to us, earlier in the week the little boy had gone hunting with his grandfather and brought a gun home with him. His mother did not realize it was real, which led to it being left unsecured. Within a few minutes of the boys’ arrival on the 22nd, Matthew’s friend showed him his gun. As he picked it up, it discharged. Matthew was shot by the one bullet left in that gun and he died in an ambulance on the way to the hospital.
There really are no words to adequately describe the heartache of losing a child. Matthew was a joyous child and his absence has left a void that will never be filled. However, as deep as our pain is, we didn’t want his death to be without reason. In our son’s memory, my husband, Chip, and I founded The Matthew Bellamy Project. The response has been tremendous. It’s not always easy to be so open about our loss and heartache, but we know it’s the right thing to do. We have to make it real so others will understand the importance of protecting children from firearms. I miss my son, every minute of every day. Losing Matthew has left a hole in my heart that will never be filled.
As you read this, I want to ask three things of you. First, if you have unsecured firearms in your home, please do not go to bed tonight until you have locked them up. There is nothing in your home that you need to protect that is more valuable than the life of a loved one. It is parents’ job to make sure their children are safe.
Secondly, before you allow your children to go into someone else’s home, you need to ask one simple question, “Do you have unsecured firearms in your home?” You may find it hard to do, but trust me, it’s one of the most important things you will ever do for your kids.
And third, I ask you to embrace and love your family, especially the children in your life. No one is guaranteed tomorrow. Cherish your family today.”


Now Let's see if you ASK now??

How You Can Help

Join thousands of parents and community organizations nationwide who are helping to share the lifesaving message of the ASK campaign!
Stay informed about program news and updates by emailing ask@cpyv.org with your first and last name, city, state, and email address.
“Like” CPYV’s Facebook page, Arm Yourself with Knowledge to stay current on information to keep your family safe.
Promote the ASK campaign in your community by circulating ASK public service announcements through community groups and local media outlets.
Distribute ASK brochures in both English and Spanish to parents through schools, children/family agencies, pediatricians’ offices and health clinics. Email ask@cpyv.org to place an order.
Link your website to www.AskingSavesKids.org by requesting ASK link art.
Download the ASK Community Guide 2012 for more information and the ASK order form. Or contact us directly to order brochures, posters and other materials.

 

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