JH Walker Foundation combines couple’s love of music, dedication to child safety

JH Walker Foundation combines couple’s love of music, dedication to child safety

Lindsay and Justin Walker of Midland have combined two of their passions – enrichment through music and child safety – into a private family foundation.

The JH Walker Foundation is beginning to build momentum with fundraisers and grants.

The Walkers established the foundation in the fall of 2019 in honor of their infant son, James Henry “Jimmy” Walker, who died from injuries sustained in a car accident in 2015. The tragedy galvanized the Walkers to advocate for child safety. The couple donated 10 Graco car seats to MidMichigan Medical Center-Midland in 2019, and Lindsay is a certified child passenger safety technician.

“For us, the foundation was something we could do to turn the tragedy into something positive,” Justin said.

A major tenant of the JH Walker Foundation is about safe child travel. Justin and Lindsay conducted a Clothes to Car Seats drive between April 15 and May 15, collecting gently-used children’s clothing and toys to sell at various events to raise money to raise funds for car seats, sleep sacks and other child safety items. They have sold the items at a Sanford Rising event in late May and plan to hold another sale July 9-11.

“The community has been very generous with donations. We still have items coming in after the drive was over,” Lindsay said.

The foundation has raised enough to purchase eight car seats thus far. The Walkers explained that a car seat is not considered safe to use once it’s been in a car collision; also, car seats have an expiration date of six to 10 years since materials degrade over time and car seat safety technology continues to improve.

Being able to support child safety means more than Lindsay can put into words. As a car seat technician, she works as a volunteer with a trauma prevention group through MidMichigan Health as well as Safe and Sound Child Advocacy Center. Increasing families’ knowledge about car seat safety is one of her goals.

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