Kelsey Lindley, of community services with the Westbank First Nation, carries a car seat into the WFN Health and Wellness building, as part of a child safety initiative in the Central Okanagan, Tuesday, Nov. 7. - Credit: Carli Berry/Capital News

Strapping in at the WFN

West Kelowna - Car seats were donated to the WFN as part of a child safety initiative

The children of Westbank First Nation residents will be a little safer when travelling in their families’ vehicles.

Car seats have been delivered to nine communities in the Central and South Okanagan this month, as part of the Child Safety Initiative.

“We don’t want families to ever have to choose between purchasing a car seat and their child safety when finances are tight,” said Reanne Holden-Amado, manager of community investment with United Way.

Related: Most B.C. parents don’t know if their kids’ car seats are safe: BCA

This was the first year the WFN received seats, but the program has been ongoing for the past three years, said Holden-Amado. The car seats are delivered to residents based on their needs and the program started when there was a recognized need for safety in the communities. Seats were also delivered to Kelowna Community Resources and Lake Country Health Planning.

The WFN received seven out of 84 car seats, which were provided by Costco at a discounted rate. Budget Rentals provided a moving truck.

“It’s been expanding every year… next year we’re hoping to expand to the North Okanagan,” said Marianne Dahl, marketing and events manager for United Way CSO.

Car seats are given out as part of a WFN health program, so all postnatal mothers have a car seat when leaving the hospital, so partnering with the initiative makes sense as they are donated instead of purchased, said Maria Reed, director of community services for WFN.

The plan is held by United Way, the KGH Foundation and the Central Okanagan Foundation.

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