SunSmart message comes to Matamata
The Cancer Society’s SunSmart turtle mascot Undercover Cody rolled into Matamata last week with a new summer road show.
‘‘The Cancer Society had a huge amount of success with last year’s SunSmart summer road show that we’ve decided to do it all again,’’ said Waikato Bay of Plenty Cancer Society spokesperson Rachael Mounsey.
‘‘Our new show Undercover Cody’s picnic at the beach will travel to over 150 early childhood centres, kindergartens and te kohanga reo ensuring kids know how to slip, slop, slap and wrap to keep themselves safe in the sun this summer. The show is going to be both educational and entertaining and will once again include Undercover Cody’s great friends Duke, Ella and Rupert.’’
Skin cancer is New Zealand’s most common form of cancer and evidence shows overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun during childhood significantly increases the risk of developing skin cancers later in life.
The Cancer Society believes early childhood centres can play an important role in helping to reduce these skin cancer statistics by practising SunSmart behaviours with children while they are in their care.
‘‘As children are at early childhood centres when UV radiation levels are at their peak, it is important that these facilities know how to provide a sun safe environment,’’ said Ms Mounsey.
‘‘Two Cancer Society health promotion teams will be travelling around the Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Lakes regions showing these centres and the kids what they can do to create a sun safe environment and how they can protect themselves individually.’’
Aimed at kids from two to four years of age, the road show is free and every centre will receive a complimentary goody bag full of Undercover Cody resources to use with the kids following the show.
‘‘We hope teachers spend time with their students and the resources following the show to further reinforce the slip, slop, slap and wrap message for the summer,’’ she said.
‘‘It is vital that we teach kids when they are young how to protect themselves in the sun so that SunSmart behaviours stay with them from youth and protect them into adulthood.’’
Sun smart: Undercover Cody came to Matamata last week to spread the word about covering up in the sun. He’s pictured here with children from Rawhiti Kindergarten.