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Our Programs

  • Our age-appropriate, injury prevention presentations are interactive as well as educational.
  • Our educational programs are free of charge, thanks to a federal grant allocated through the Illinois Department of Transportation.
  • Because a leading cause of injury is motor vehicle crashes, we place an emphasis on traffic safety and may feature safe driving, child passenger safety, or bike helmets.

ThinkFirst for Teens

Our most popular program! Perfect for teens in high school assemblies and classrooms, ThinkFirst health professionals and an injured speaker present the basic brain and spine anatomy, how injuries occur and how they can be prevented, followed by the first-person story of how brain or spinal cord injury changed a life.

ThinkFirst fot Youth/Teens

Focusing on bike helmets, seat belt usage, and basic safety regarding preventing brain and spinal cord injuries, our interactive brain and spinal cord injury presentations are available for elementary through middle school students. ThinkFirst for Kids is presented to children in grades K-3, while ThinkFirst for Youth is presented to children grades 4-8.

Child Safety Seat Education and Checkpoint Events

SIU School of Medicine’s ThinkFirst staff members are all nationally certified Child Passenger Safety instructors or technicians. As partners with the Illinois Department of Transportation, we provide assistance at local car-seat/booster seat checkpoints and educational events.

Bike Helmet Fittings

To prevent pediatric acquired brain injuries, SIU School of Medicine's ThinkFirst program works with local schools to educate and fit students with bicycle helmets, as resources are available.

Crash Re-Enactment EventsCrash Reenactment

In an effort to reach teens on a deeper level, ThinkFirst helps organize crash re-enactments at local high schools. Community partners, including local law enforcement and emergency rescue personnel, are involved in planning and together, a mock crash scene is created to demonstrate the leading cause of injury and death for teens. SIU School of Medicine facilitates the planning and assists with the moulage make-up.
View a reenactment video from Triopia High School

Additional Activities

Victim Impact Panels
SIU School of Medicine’s ThinkFirst program provides an injured speaker to present information to court-ordered DUI offenders in several central Illinois counties.