When children lose their parents, they are called orphans.
When a spouse loses their partner, they are called a widow or widower.
When parents lose their child, there are no words…
Central to KidsAndCars.org’s mission of keeping children safe in and around vehicles is the spirited devotion of survivor advocates. It is impossible to find the words to describe the loss of a child; in fact (as noted above) there literally is not a word in our vocabulary to describe the most devastating and traumatic events we work to prevent.
KidsAndCars.org was founded based on the work of survivor advocates. A personal tragedy involving Janette Fennell (founder & president of KidsAndCars.org) and her family led to her dedicated career in injury prevention advocating for vehicles that are safer for children, thus making vehicles safer for everyone. Vehicles that are safer for children translate to safer vehicles for all Americans. Read how the Fennell family began their journey.
“The Power of Survivor Advocacy: Making Car Trunks Escapable” and “Channeling Grief into Policy Change, Survivor Advocacy for Injury Prevention” were publications both coauthored by Ms. Fennell. She is also regularly sought out to present at national and regional conferences.
KidsAndCars.org established outreach programs for families who have lost children in nontraffic tragedies. These efforts enable survivors to tell their stories while advocating for safer vehicles, honor their child and channel their grief into positive change. This program allows families to connect and help each other through the incredibly difficult grieving process.
Voices of KidsAndCars.org survivor advocates were key to the passage of “The Cameron Gulbransen Kids Transportation Safety Act” which was signed by President George W. Bush in 2008. Survivor advocates working with KidsAndCars.org have been featured on national and local television programs as well as radio stations nationwide telling their family’s stories to help keep all children safe. Survivor advocates stories are also featured in Gene Weingarten’s Pulitzer Prize winning feature article that appeared in The Washington Post, Fatal Distraction.
KidsAndCars.org’s survivor advocacy programs have been and will continue to be the key to successfully keeping America’s children safe in and around motor vehicles.