Minnesota law requires all children under the age of 10 to wear a life jacket on any boat or watercraft that is not docked.  Of course, for safety, life jackets are also recommended for children that are playing on shorelines and docks or near water.  With the number of lakes in our area, it only makes sense to make sure your child has his/her own life jacket and Essentia Health-St. Mary's Children's Hospital and Kohl's Cares is making that a bit easier by offering FREE life jackets.

This is the third year for "Alive with Life Jackets", a campaign that gives away life jackets AND teaches water safety to both kids and adults.

On Thursday, June 12, 1,000 free life jackets will be distributed in the Duluth Kohl's parking lot, 2115 Miller Trunk Highway, from 4-6p (while supplies last).  Please note that the child or children must be present.  Children must be present so they are fitted with the proper sized life jacket.  There will also be a free shuttle service provided from 3-7p from the nearby Hobby Lobby parking lot at 1734 Mall Drive.

Jenn Hoff, injury prevention coordinator for Essentia Health's Trauma Services says,

We want parents and kids to think about wearing a life jacket in the same way they thing about wearing a seat belt or using a car seat.

Kohl's Cares provides a grant for the life jackets and education to help keep kids safe.  This year's "Alive with Life Jackets" was funded by Kohl's with a $34,962 grant.  Since 2006, Kohl's Cares has generously donated more than $290,000 to St. Mary's Children's Hospital.

Info:  Essential Health's Spring 2014 Newsletter