NRA’s Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program Reaches 30 Million Children

This simple Eddie Eagle GunSafe® lesson can save a child’s life.  From the NRA, please PASS IT ON! Courtesy www.EddieEagle.com

FAIRFAX, Va. – The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program, NRA’s groundbreaking gun accident prevention course for children, has achieved another milestone by reaching its 30 millionth child.

Created in 1988 by past NRA President Marion P. Hammer, in consultation with elementary school teachers, law enforcement officers and child psychologists, the program provides pre-K through fourth grade children with simple, effective rules to follow should they encounter a firearm in an unsupervised setting: “If you see a gun: STOP! Don’t Touch. Run Away. Tell a Grown-Up.”

Volunteers for the Eddie Eagle program come from diverse backgrounds, but they share a commitment to keeping children safe. Those involved include NRA members, teachers, law enforcement officers and community activists who teach the program, as well as private donors and Friends of NRA volunteers who raise funds to provide the program’s educational materials.

More than 26,000 educators, law enforcement agencies, and civic organizations have taught the program since 1988. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, incidental firearm-related deaths among children in Eddie Eagle’s targeted age group have declined more than 80 percent since the program’s launch.

The Eddie Eagle program has been praised by numerous groups and elected officials, including the Association of American Educators, the Youth Activities Division of the National Safety Council, the National Sheriffs’ Association, the U.S. Department of Justice (through its Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency), and 26 state governors.

Law enforcement partnerships with Eddie Eagle have proven to be very effective. In fact, almost 400 Eddie Eagle mascot costumes are in use by law enforcement officers across the county. NRA also offers free Eddie Eagle materials to any law enforcement agency, educational facility, hospital, or library across the nation.

Funds raised through Friends of NRA and distributed through The NRA Foundation enable schools and police departments to teach the program at little or no cost. The NRA encourages citizens nationwide to participate in heightening gun accident prevention awareness within their local communities.

Schools, law enforcement agencies, civic groups, and others interested in more information about The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program, or persons who wish to see if free materials are available in their communities, should email the NRA Community Outreach Department at eddie@nrahq.org or visit www.eddieeagle.com.

About the National Rifle Association: Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America’s oldest civil rights and sportsmen’s group. Five million members strong, NRA continues its mission to uphold Second Amendment rights and is the leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the military. Visit http://www.nra.org.

Does your child know what to do if he or she finds a gun?

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“STOP! Don’t Touch. Run Away. Tell a Grown-up.”

The MAIN MESSAGE is SAFETY.  A gun accident prevention program that seeks to help parents, law enforcement, community groups and educators navigate a topic paramount to our children’s safety is often ignored by schools for reasons unknown.  But the Eddie Eagle GunSafe® program is on a mission to help parents and educators teach Pre-K through 4th graders what to do if they ever come across a gun.  The program is documented in cartoon fashion and kids soon learn that Eddie and his Wing Team are all about safety and protecting them from a gun mishap.

Kids learn and remember these four things:

STOP!

This first step is crucial. Stopping first allows your child the time he or she needs to remember the rest of the safety instructions.

Don’t Touch

A firearm that is not touched or disturbed is unlikely to be fired and otherwise endanger your child or other people.

Run Away

This removes the temptation to touch the firearm as well as the danger that another person may negligently cause it to fire.

Tell A Grown-up

Children should seek a trustworthy adult, neighbor, relative or teacher – if a parent or guardian is not available.

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Kids Should Watch the Eddie Eagle Video

Eddie and the Wing Team deliver this important message in this 8-minute long video, newly released in spring 2015.  In the video, the Wing Team encounters a gun in a place they didn’t expect.  Eddie helps his friends remember how to stay safe by singing his favorite song.  Click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ho36vonT3Rw.

The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® program doesn’t teach parents about guns, but it does teach parents about gun safety and how to relay that information to their kids correctly in a method that’s really memorable to kids.  It’s the gun equivalent of stop, drop and roll.  Be sure your kids know it well enough to recite it.

Dr. Lisa Monroe, early childhood education specialist, says, “A teacher knows their students best.  And they can look at the curriculum and decide what activities would best fit their group of students.  So it’s not necessarily a canned curriculum that you must do X, Y and Z.  It gives the teachers the autonomy and flexibility to choose what they know to be best for their particular group of students.”

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Message for Educators:

Dr. Lisa Monroe believes in the Eddie Eagle GunSafe® program and its message and offers some advice to educators who may have any reservations or uncertainties about introducing Eddie to their schools. “I would say to a superintendent or school administrator that this program is absolutely appropriate for their schools and their children because it’s about safety,” says Dr. Monroe.  Instructors and administrators can review her message direct at: https://eddieeagle.nra.org/testimonials/about-eddie-eagle-gunsafe/a-message-for-educators/.

Parents agree that the most important priority when teaching gun safety is really knowing your kids, having an open dialogue with them and knowing where they are –emotionally, in their friends and what their interests are.

FREE Eddie Eagle Program Materials:

Program curriculum materials and retail items are designed for children in Pre-K through Fourth grade. Eddie Eagle staff recommends one Activity Book, Sticker, and Parent’s Guide To Gun Safety per student as well as a Parent/Instructor Guide, Safety Poster and DVD for every instructor, school or home.  Note that law enforcement agencies, schools, hospitals, daycare centers, or libraries that wish to utilize our grant funding program can receive FREE program materials. At this link:

https://eddieeagle.nra.org/program-resources/program-materials/

Grant Funding:

Grant funding is available for schools, law enforcement agencies, hospitals, daycare centers and libraries interested in bringing Eddie Eagle to children in their area. Obtaining these funds is easy and hassle free – there is no application or paperwork to complete. Funding can provide FREE Kids Activity Books, Instructor Guides, DVDs, parent’s brochures, reward stickers and posters. Additionally, law enforcement agencies may be eligible to receive grant funding for the Eddie Eagle Mascot Costume.

If you are with one of these groups and wish to place an order please email eddie@nrahq.org or call 1-800-231-0752.

These grants are made possible by the generosity of donations from the Friends of NRA program. Friends of NRA includes dedicated volunteers who work with NRA field representatives in their respective states to organize fundraising events that support NRA vital programs.

Tips to Remember

  • Funding is provided on a first come, first serve basis.
  • Determine which materials are needed and the quantities you would like to order before contacting.
  • Orders must be placed with a street shipping address, no PO Boxes please.
  • Allow at least three weeks (15 business days) for ordered materials to arrive.
  • Grant funding does not cover the cost of retail items.
  • Eddie Eagle staff reviews all orders before shipment, and reserves the right to limit the quantity of items ordered.

The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® program is a gun accident prevention program developed by a task force made up of educators, school administrators, curriculum specialists, urban housing safety officials, clinical psychologists, law enforcement officials and National Rifle Association firearm safety experts.  It began in 1988 with one mission: teach children four simple, easy to remember steps so they know what to do if they ever come across a gun.  In 2015 the NRA introduced a fresh, new Eddie and added some friends—his Wing Team.  Though Eddie has evolved, his mission has not. In the brand new video, Eddie and his friends remind children that if they see a gun, they need to Stop!  Don’t touch.  Run away.  Tell a grown-up.

Schools and parents talk about stranger danger, internet safety, fire drills and more with children…so why not include gun safety?  The program makes no value judgments about firearms, no firearms are ever used, and it covers an important topic that needs to be addressed with kids.  Like swimming pools, electrical outlets and matchbooks, firearms are simply treated as a part of everyday life.  With firearms found in about half of all American households, it’s a stance that makes sense.

Eddie Eagle GunSafe® is the number one gun accident prevention program for children and has taught over 28 million children how to stay safe if they ever find a gun.

All photographs and illustrations, including all programs and referenced program details, are credit to the National Rifle Association (NRA).