The Big Red Safety Box

The Big Red Safety Box

Current statistics report that around one of every 88 children have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Autism Spectrum Disorder is a complicated and wide-range disorder that varies from child to child. Lack of communication and inability to comprehend language and social cues are some of the biggest symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder. Children with Autism are 49% more likely to wander away or run off from their caregivers than children without Autism. Based on their communication level, among other factors, they may not be able to ask for help, or fully comprehend the situations they may encounter, if they are lost and on their own.

In 2003, the parent-run organization, the National Autism Association (NAA), created the Big Red Safety Box. This is a toolkit which is a compilation of resources and supplies for parents, caregivers, and first responders that help educate, raise awareness, and create a plan—not only for searching for a child with autism who has wandered away—but also for preventing wandering as well.

What is in the Toolkit?

NAA’s Big Red Safety Box includes the following resources:

  • The Be REDy Booklet* for parents and caregivers that contains:
    • Caregiver Checklist
    • Family Wandering Emergency Plan
    • First-Responder Profile Form
    • Wandering-Prevention Brochure
    • Sample IEP Letter
    • Student Profile Form
  • Wireless Door/Window Alarms with batteries
  • RoadID Personalized, Engraved Shoe ID Tag
  • Adhesive Stop Sign Visual Prompts for doors and windows
  • Safety Alert Window Clings for car or home windows
  • Red Safety Alert Wristband
  • The Be REDy Booklet* for first responders that contains:
  • Autism Overview
  • Autism Behaviors
  • Autism Wandering Statistics
  • First Responder Checklist
  • First Responder Resource Sheet
  • First Responder Tips
  • First Responder Notification Form
  • Search & Rescue Guidelines For Missing Persons With Special Needs (NCMEC)
  • Print-and-Hang Flyer

*Both Be REDy Booklets can be printed for free with the following links:

The Be REDy Booklet for parents and caregivers

The Be REDy Booklet for first responders

How Can I Get One?

Ability to receive one of these toolkits free of charge is based on two main factors:

Funding – Since the Big Red Safety Box is a free product for parents of children with autism, the NAA rely solely on donations and grants to create and distribute these toolkits. The number of toolkits available will vary at any given time, based on the overall amount of funding received.

Being a Qualified Candidate – The toolkit is available only to parents or caregivers of a child with Autism. To be considered for the Big Red Safety Box, you must fill out an application and meet certain guidelines set forth by the NAA. To apply, visit the following web site:

Sources: : Big Red Safety Box | Big Red Safety Toolkit FR | Big Red Safety Toolkit

The Big Red Safety Box
Shandy Marso, Contributor

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