Sinas Dramis gives away almost 550 bike helmets at fifth annual Lids for Kids

prev
next

LEGAL NEWS PHOTOS BY CYNTHIA PRICE

by Cynthia Price
Legal News

Despite the light rain, Sinas Dramis Law Firm gave away 546 bike helmets at its annual Lids for Kids event on June 9.

This exceeds the number in any previous year since the Grand Rapids version of the bike helmet give-away began in 2014.

The firm holds three events across the state, and the numbers were similar in Traverse City (506) and Lansing (508), giving 1,560 children the opportunity to pursue active, healthy bicycling while optimizing safety.

Sinas Dramis donated every one of those helmets given to the kids. “Our firm donates these helmets because it’s the right thing to do,” says Tom Sinas of the Grand Rapids office. “Science tells us that bike helmets are hugely effective in preventing brain injuries in kids. The last client I ever want is a child with a brain injury. So if this event means that we prevent even one brain injury in West Michigan, then it’s worth it.

“And it’s a heck of a lot of fun,” he added.

It is, indeed, a hugely entertaining event for the children who come to Garfield Park on a Saturday each year. In addition to the attention lavished on them by the many volunteers who fit their helmets perfectly, kids can find out about public safety vehicles including a fire truck, eat fruit (donated by GoGo Squeeze), and win a free bike (some donated by Applied Imaging) from the many raffled off.

This year, they could also make the acquaintance of a variety of superheroes circulating through the crowd, courtesy of Cosplay Crusaders.

The Brain Injury Association of Michigan (BIAMI) co-sponsors the event with Sinas Dramis. The non-profit organization’s mission is “to improve the lives of those affected by brain injury and to reduce the incidence and impact of brain injury through advocacy, awareness, education, prevention, research, and support.” President and CEO Tom Constand, whose son had a traumatic head injury, comes to Lids for Kids every year.

The relationship between BIAMI and Sinas Dramis is fitting, because the law firm focuses on personal injury representation, with a particular expertise in auto no-fault and personal injury. Practitioners at Sinas Dramis, particularly Bryan Waldman, have in-depth knowledge on bi-cycle law.

The firm has a long commitment to educating the public on personal injury law as well. They sponsor the People’s Law School along with the Michigan Association for Justice. It is held in Lansing each year, but there have been some sessions in Grand Rapids. Sinas Dramis attorneys appear on television regularly, including segments on FOX-47 in the Lansing area, and locally on FOX-17, which was also a partner in the Lids for Kids event.

Education efforts extend to statute analysis and advocacy, through such partner organizations as the Coalition Protecting Auto No-Fault (CPAN), for which Tom Sinas serves as associate general counsel.

Sinas, also a Grand Rapids Bar Association trustee and – as reported last week – president of the Kent County Legal Assistance Center,  is currently secretary of the BIAMI?board. His well-known father, George T. Sinas, was very active in the non-profit board as well.

It was George Sinas who started the tradition of the firm’s bike helmet giveaway, in 2003. Originally called Heads Up for Safety, the Lansing-based event has given away and fitted  thousands of helmets. Traverse City began holding Lids for Kids events in 2017.

Other partners in the Grand Rapids Lids for Kids were (as mentioned above) FOX-17, the Grand Rapids Fire Department, Grand Rapids Public Schools (GRPS), Mary Free Bed, and Hope Network. Candace Monacelli, a meteorologist at FOX-17, joined Tom Sinas in announcing the bike raffle winners;  John Helmholdt of GRPS and others pulled  the winning tickets out of the hundreds submitted.

Mayor Rosalynn Bliss welcomed her constituents, as she has done every  one of the five years since Lids for Kids began.