The Safety Store at Riley Serves a Critical Need
July 13, 2018
Topics: About Us
Cara Fast has been the manager since The Safety Store’s opening in 2005. Her education in social work led her to a career as a Child Life Specialist, and she spent years at Methodist and Riley Hospitals. “When I started having my own kids, the nights and weekend work was difficult. I made a change to essentially what is a retail job, with zero retail experience,” said Cara.
During her time working in the hospital, Cara saw kids injured, sometimes fatally, because of accidents. She understands better than most why education plays a paramount role in preventing accidents, and an equally sizeable role in The Safety Store’s mission. Education—on everything from bicycle safety to how to properly strap a child in a car seat—takes center stage in every sale.
The Safety Store accomplishes quite a bit without a social media presence or paid ads. Word of mouth has increased awareness and sales of their products, both onsite and through their web store. And it’s not just products for kids with young families they cater to; the store carries safety products for senior citizens too. More than 150 products are available, including items for adults and children with special needs, and pre-packaged, gift-wrapped baby shower gifts.
Money donated through the Riley Children’s Foundation funds nearly all of The Safety Store’s nearly $330,000 budget.
“It takes donor dollars to facilitate these programs for families who need it,” says Cara. “Safety is not a fad. I want to make sure that safety is a priority and that good safety practices are a lifelong goal for everyone.”
The Safety Store is located in the Riley Hospital Outpatient Center, right next to the Over the Rainbow Gift Shop. Hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Call at 317.944.6565. SafetyStore.iu.edu
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