This site stores cookies. This is how we treat your information.








Name of the Community: RAPLA COUNTY

Country: ESTONIA

Number of inhabitants: 36 678 (01.01.2009)

Program started year: (2001) 2002


                                   International Safe Communities Network Membership:

                                                 Designation year: 2004

Redesignation year: 2009


                                Info address on website for the program:





For further information contact:


Name: ÜLLE RÜÜSON / Aili Laasner

Institution: Health Promotion Union of Estonia

Address: Str Tallinn 14

Zip code: 79513                   City: RAPLA

Country: ESTONIA

Phone: + 372 51 35 396

e-mail:   and/or


info address on www:



PROGRAM 2004 - 2009


The program covers the following safety promotion activities:


Children 0-14 years

The program for newborn-age babies and up to 7 years old kids started already in past period.

Family doctors and nurses are important associated group in this field. GP-s counsel all parents of up to 1 year old babies. Estonian Health Insurance Fund has published brochures for family doctors to deliver. In 2007 – 2009, the parents have been provided with written information about infants` injury prevention.


Kindergartens mainly focus on safe-traffic-skills and reasonable use of protective equipment. The kindergartens were shown 20 performances each year: i.e. about 100 interactive plays for 1500 children! These are “Study the Street Traffic” since 2001 and “112”on rescue issues since 2004. In 2007 the traffic play received a new set model. Interactive traffic-play highlighted significance of reflectors, helmets and other necessary protective equipment for cycling. Kids must wear helmets when cycle – that is a rule in all municipal kindergartens.

Our traffic-safety specialists are very frequent visitors in kindergartens and in schools.



Another interesting example of injury prevention is seminars for kindergartens´ teachers and practical trainings for kids „Look for Ott! “ (in what way a child has to behave if he/she has got lost in the forest). The “Look for Ott ! ”- weeks took place in four centres of Rapla county in 2006-2009, where all preschool children participated. The “Look for Ott ! ” program has taught 15 teachers in 2007-2009.




In the years 2006-2009 trauma council contributed schools and kindergartens with 215 000 EEK, i.e. 28% from all the project resources. Institutional smaller projects have provided additional opportunities for safety promotion interventions for kindergartens and schools.

Injury prevention and safety promotion in kindergartens and at schools could also be characterised by changes in physical environment.


Injury prevention at schools is an essential part of health education curriculum.


In 2008 and 2009, the project “Protect yourself and help others “ involved the 6-graders for first aid and safe traffic education and practical trainings on rescue issues during the school year and also for 4-day safety camp at the end of the school year. In 2008 13 schools and in 2009 14 schools with 100 students participated in the camp.



For health councils/ teams of Health Promotion Schools were organised study trips and Summer schools in 2008-2009, where, among others, theoretical aspects of safety promotion and practical issues were dealt with.


Youths 15 – 24 years

As regards the pupils of age at 16 -18 and young adults we work in tight collaboration with drug prevention program both on national and local level. An emphasis has been placed on relations between youth and alcohol consumption/ abuse, and likewise, to alcohol related violence and accidents. In general, the given problem is complicated and challenging but at least schools have made efforts for seeking effective control-possibilities to guarantee alcohol-free events. Our efforts and interventions have been followed to threatening results about alcohol consumption and abuse based on results of surveys in 2001-2004 each year, and later in two years, carried out among pupils of 10-11, 13-14, 17-18 years old. The last survey was carried out in spring 2008.

In 2009, the gymnasium- youth conducted large HIV/AIDS project on drug prevention issues.



Adults 25 – 64 years and all other age-groups

Completely new intervention is a Health and Safety Fair, organised in 2008 and 2009, where 30 institutions and organisations introduced their activities. The Fair was organised in co-operation with Spring Fair, Grill Festival and several thousands of people took part on it.





County Newspaper Nädaline has been an excellent co-operation partner since 2000, when the first Health Newspaper was published. Special newspapers on Injury Prevention have been published 15 times (written information, practical guidelines and examples on 4 pages x 15 times).

Estonian II Safe Community Conference will publish the first local Health Magazine “Health Promoter” – on 16 pages, all the participants of the conference will get it.



The Elderly

The elderly has been one of the main target groups of the program (since 2002). Municipal social counsellors, social workers and representatives of associations of retired persons are in tight communication to elder people.

In 2005 county celebrated the International Elderly People Day, and since 2006 each municipal celebrates the Health Day for elderly people at the beginning of October.

Trainings for home-visiting social workers were arranged in 2008 (a seminar on risk analysis and injury prevention for aged). All home-visiting- social workers should register all possible accident related places and find solutions in order to decrease the risk of accident.

County and municipal newspapers have published articles about injury prevention and safe environment promotion for elderly people.






Based on the idea of the project “Look for OTT ! ” (for children) we launched the same essence project for elderly in municipals in 2008 and in 2009 (“Look for OSS !”).



At the following environments:


Home: all interventions targeted on different population groups are very tightly related to prevention of home and leisure time injuries (examples about interventions regarding babies and kids, their parents, elderly people; Health and Safety Fair etc)


Road-safety, traffic: Estonian Road Administration is responsible for road safety regarding national roads. This administration also provides the targeted resources for road safety promotion for its local (county level) branches. All other roads are municipals´ concern. Road safety programs target the whole population, an emphasis has been given to children´ and young adults´ safety.

County level undertakings, e.g. distribution of light reflectors for first graders and elderly people support general programs. The project has produced 2000 Safe Community (TURVALINE RAPLAMAA) reflectors. “IF…”insurance fund has sponsored our county level program with reflectors, too. Special topic-specific sticking tape for helmet has been given to participants of cycling tours and competitions and of various children´ events (e.g. after an interactive traffic play).



Traffic-behaviour is a part of health education in kindergartens and at schools.



Road accidents and injuries are also documented in all details.


New infrastructures were built in 2005-2009: there are new light roads for cyclists and pedestrians in different municipals of the county.




Occupational; industry: the work related accidents prevention is systematically coordinated and evaluated by country level institution.


School: examples are given in the paragraph above (children and youth)


Sports: pamphlets for extreme sport for schools (for students) have been produced.

Sport clubs follow stricter regulations on safety at their venues. Training methods have also been targeted in order to prevent accidents. There is an ongoing campaign, supported also by our program to persuade people to use helmets while cycling or roller-skating.


Leisure: all interventions targeted on different population groups are tightly related to prevention of home and leisure time injuries. Examples are given in paragraphs above.


Natural Disaster: NO natural disasters



Alcohol: regrettably, Estonian national alcohol policy is still too liberal. However, Estonia has fixed rules to decrease access to alcoholic drinks.

In 2003, the Rapla county first in Estonia enacted the ban for retail of any kind of alcoholic drinks at night time. All municipals had fixed restricted alcohol sale from 10 p.m. – 8.a.m. by 01 January 2008.

In Rapla county the night criminal situation has improved due to the diminished number of hooliganism and vandalism what also was/is related to alcohol abuse. The number of accidents with drunk drivers has been reduced. At the same time the frequency of traffic supervision has also been increased.


Parallel to above mentioned restrictions all municipals are working on plans for youth to offer them a variety of different alternative activities and more to involve them into community life.


Village communities

Heads of villages received trainings from both the injury prevention program and rescue board of the county.

There have been arranged so-called Safety Days in villages in cooperation with the rescue service, the police, Estonian Red Cross, Neighbourhood Watch and with our injury prevention project in 2007-2008.







In fall 2009 – trauma prevention council announced the contest “The Safest Municipality of Rapla county”, which assist in collecting different statistical data regarding injuries and safety on municipal level.





Violence prevention: in collaboration with county level drug prevention program and Rapla police


Suicide prevention: in collaboration with county level drug prevention program



Programs aiming at high-risk groups

Considering the program objectives and data of statistics available the high-risk groups and areas were identified as children, young adults, elderly, road-safety, home and leisure time environments.

However, we have given more attention to target groups while they happen to experience different situations and they have to learn to avoid risky-behaviour, e.g. children at homes, at school, in traffic, attending the leisure time events, doing a lot of sport.

Practical interventions for kids, pupils etc have been listed and described in previous paragraph.



Surveillance of injuries:

Population base: 36 678


Regrettably, there still does not exist a common injury registry in Estonia. We use the data available (nation-wide statistics from Ministry of Social Affairs of Estonia), i.e. from official health care statistics where injuries are documented as diseases, although the causes of injuries could be not clearly appeared. It is to be hoped that national injury registry would fulfil that gap, but elaborating the registry is postponed again, because of economic pressure.


We also have used statistics and examples from police and fire and rescue service, from county hospital, from local traffic safety department.



Publications and

produced information material, pamphlets:

- Health Profile of Rapla County, 2005

- Turvaline Raplamaa /Safe Rapla County/ - 2007

Lots of informative articles in local newspapers (municipal and county newspapers)

Pamphlets for extreme sport for schools (for students)




Project manager Mrs Ülle Rüüson, health promotion specialist of Rapla county




Intersectional group (18 members) is acting on voluntary basis.


International commitments:

Study visits: -

Participation in Safe Community conferences 2005 – 2009:

  • The 14th International Conference on Safe Communities in Bergen, Norway in June 2005 (oral presentation)
  • The 8th World Conference on Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion in Durban, South Africa in April 2006
  • The 15th International Conference on Safe Communities in Cape Town, South Africa in April 2006 (oral presentation & poster presentation)
  • The 16th International Conference on Safe Communities in Tehran, Iran in June 2007 (oral presentation)



  • The 9th World Conference on Injury Prevention and Control in Merida, Mexico in March 2008 (poster presentation)
  • The 18th International Conference on Safe Communities in Cali, Colombia in

August 2009 (oral presentation)




Hosting Safe Community conferences: not yet

Hosting “Travelling Seminars”: not yet