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Staying Safe In The Sun; South Coast Kids Learning About SPF Aimed At Skin Cancer Prevention

Lessons in sun safety are being taught in Santa Barbara
Lessons in sun safety are being taught in Santa Barbara

For many, the lessons of wearing sun protection were learned late in life. But a free summer program for some children in Santa Barbara is aiming to equip children with the knowledge of how to stay safe in the sun.

A lesson about sun safety, skin cancer and how to enjoy the sun in a safe and healthy way is underway for these youngsters in Santa Barbara.

It’s an initiative from Ridley-Tree Cancer Center, which have partnered with United Way of Santa Barbara County’s Fun In The Sun to educate and promote healthy living and lifestyle for participants in grades 2nd through 12th.

It’s lessons like these which many of us didn’t get as children, and are paying the price as adults.

Lisa Winebrenner, the Wellness Manager from Ridley-Tree Cancer Center says that these are lessons which are vital for skin cancer prevention.

"For those of us over a certain age, that didn't know this growing up, it would have been very nice to know about UV, it would have been very nice to have sunscreen available and not just go and bake yourself at the beach and get sunburned," she told KCLU.

"But now we know that getting sunburned can often lead to skin cancer in later life. Without that knowledge, I think many of us are paying the price."

"Kids are very amiable to learn those healthy habits," adds Winebrenner.

The lessons are part of a free six-week summer camp program, that aims to address summer learning loss and give extra life skills for healthy living – like bike riding - explains Melinda Cabrera, director of strategic partnerships for United Way.

"It's really a great opportunity for the kids and the educators to do things that the school day doesn't really allow," says Cabrera.

"In the summertime when they're out there in the sun, it's the perfect opportunity to teach these kids about the sun and how to take care of yourself."

"It's important to teach the kids how to take care of themselves and what the difference in SPFs are.

"And when they're out there enjoying the bike program, they're also learning how to take care of their skin."

And - just like riding a bike – it’s a lesson kids learn once, and never forget.

Caroline joined KCLU in October 2020. She won LA Press Club's Audio Journalist of the Year Award in 2022 and 2023.

Since joining the station she's won 10 Golden Mike Awards, 5 Los Angeles Press Club Awards, 2 National Arts & Entertainment Awards and a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Writing.

She started her broadcasting career in the UK, in both radio and television for BBC News, 95.8 Capital FM and Sky News and was awarded the Prince Philip Medal for her services to radio and journalism in 2007.

She has lived in California for eleven years and is both an American and British citizen - and a very proud mom to her daughter, Elsie.