In Jan. 1999, NIEHS published its first NIEHS Kids website on the heels of a White House memo calling for expanded access to internet-based educational resources. Today, the website is one of the most visited sites on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) website.
As of mid-February, an NIEHS Kids webpage stood at number 120 of all 268,139 NIH pages in terms of visits during the previous month.
The website is regularly updated, with the latest addition being a video created by Thai-Vu (Kiki) T. Ton, a biologist in the NIEHS Molecular Pathology Group. “Who Made the Lungs Sad” is a kid-friendly explanation on the role of cobalt on oxidative stress and lung disease. The video lives on a page titled "What is science and who are scientists?"
The video won an award during the 2021 annual Division of Translational Toxicology (DTT) Science Forum: Communicating Science to a Diverse Audience.
“It is perfectly paced for a young audience,” said Kembra Howdeshell, Ph.D., a member of the DTT team that organized the event.
Such content is an example of why NIEHS Kids won a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Green Champion Award for its outreach efforts to inspire children, as well as their parents and teachers, to take an interest in environmental health science.
Today, kids can send in their work (art, videos, stories, etc.) to the NIEHS Webcenter Email. And it just might end up on the NIEHS Kids website for others to see.
(John Yewell is a contract writer for the NIEHS Office of Communications and Public Liaison.)