CINCINNATI—UC environmental health researchers will use 15-foot-tall puppets to educate nearly 500 young children and their families about air pollution at the 5th Annual Cincinnati Childhood Allergy and Air Pollution Study (CCAAPS) family picnic.
The event takes place Saturday, Oct. 7, at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens Wings of Wonder Amphitheater from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The puppet show, which begins at 11:30 a.m., has been developed in conjunction with puppeteers from ImagineNation, who, in addition to performing the educational program titled “Gloomy Doomy, Go Away!” have custom designed puppets and settings for the event.
The families are participants in an epidemiologic study, funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), that is examining the effects of diesel exhaust on childhood respiratory health and allergy development in an effort to better understand and develop ways to combat early childhood allergies.
Grace LeMasters, PhD, an epidemiologist and principal investigator for CCAAPS, will explain the UC research team’s recent findings and offer practical advice on how to minimize children’s exposure to negative environmental factors. For example:
- Discourage idling of school buses to decrease children’s exposure to diesel exhaust, which has been related to wheezing
- Remove, with a dilution of bleach water, visible mold and water damage in the home, which is also associated with wheezing
Most recently the team found that infants born to parents with allergies are much more susceptible to develop allergies by ages 1 and 2 than previously thought.
All participants will receive free admission to the Cincinnati Zoo, lunch and prizes. The event is sponsored by NIEHS, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, AstraZeneca and Sepracor.