At Bethany Children’s Health Center, our employees truly are the heartbeat that drives the organization. Every day, through the care and service they provide, they live our mission of maximizing the potential of every child and exemplify our core values of compassion, integrity, excellence, service and stewardship.
We hope you enjoy getting to know our amazing employees through our Heartbeat profiles.
The Dynamic Duo from Safe Kids Oklahoma
What do you get when you pair up two women who are passionate about helping families live better lives and keeping kids safe? Bethany Children’s Health Center knows that Injury Prevention Specialist, Raquel Chisolm, and Child Passenger Safety Coordinator, Julia Koelsch, have had a significant impact on the hospital’s mission of maximizing the potential of every child by helping prevent injuries and potentially tragic losses. Through Safe Kids Oklahoma, the two work tirelessly to help facilitate education sessions for families, childcare providers and others in the community that range from several hours to 3-day courses. One major focus is child passenger safety, but Safe Kids Oklahoma also has resources for water, pedestrian, rail, bike and ATV safety.
Raquel was called to her position at the hospital by a desire to find meaning in her work. “I can honestly say it was a God thing,” she admits. “I think Safe Kids Oklahoma has such a beautiful home at the hospital. Both have a heart’s desire to help children grow up to reach their full potential.”
Julia’s desire to save lives drew her to her career. Before joining Safe Kids Oklahoma, she was the Child Passenger Safety Coordinator at the Latino Community Development Agency. “Keeping children safe is my passion and I love every minute of this responsibility,” she shares.
Julia responds to questions concerning child restraint selection and installation, and acknowledges that the majority of parents she talks to don’t use their child restraints properly and need her assistance to help get it right. She coordinates car seat check events both at the hospital and in the OKC metro and rural communities.
Both women see the positive impact that Safe Kids has had in Oklahoma through increasing awareness of the importance of child passenger safety, educating children and parents on ATV safety, and providing resources to parts of the state that are now inspired to help educate their own communities and make a difference.
Raquel has also seen the difference at home. After working on a recent rail safety project, Raquel learned that her six-year-old daughter had educated one of her dolls on the rules of rail safety, but told her mom that the doll had disregarded the rules and almost got hit by a train. That doll was now grounded and not allowed to attend their cookie baking party!
From one child to an entire state, the impact of Safe Kids Oklahoma continues to grow as Raquel and Julia dedicate themselves to helping parents keep their kids safe. “As a mom, you always want to prevent injury to your child,” says Raquel. “The worst imaginable injury your child could have is the one you could have prevented.”
Fun Facts – Raquel
Something people might not know: “I love to swim. I jumped in the water at age 4 and swam competitively all through high school.”
Favorite ways to spend time: “Cooking and playing with my kiddos.”
Favorite Movie: My Fair Lady
Favorite Team: “If I’m picking, San Antonio Spurs.”
From the Bucket List: “Visiting all of the United States. I have 37 states down.”
Fun Facts – Julia
Something people might not know: “I am originally from Lima, Peru.”
Favorite ways to spend time: “Experimenting with dessert recipes, painting with acrylics, and yoga.”
Favorite team: “I always support the Peruvian and Brazilian soccer teams when they play in the World Cup.”
Favorite Food: “Spaghetti with pesto, all kinds of seafood.”
From the Bucket List: “To go back to the Colca Canyon in southern Peru. It is a mesmerizing place.”