Kids and Cars

Love them, protect them.

aka   |   Olathe, KS   |
GuideStar Charity Check

Kids and Cars

EIN: 20-0024715

Mission, a 501 (c)(3) national nonprofit is dedicated to saving the lives of children and pets in and around motor vehicles. Vehicle-related accidents are the #1 killer of children in the United States. Almost all of these tragedies are preventable. There is a significant opportunity to protect children and pets by focusing efforts on keeping them safe in and around vehicles through risk identification, engineering changes, and education.

Ruling year info


President & Founder

Ms. Janette E. Fennell


Ms. Amber J Rollins

Main address

17153 W 170th Street

Olathe, KS 66062 USA

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Formerly known as

Trunk Releases Urgently Needed Coalition (TRUNC)



Subject area info

Public health

Public safety

Human services

Safety education

Population served info

Children and youth

Infants and toddlers




NTEE code info

Safety Education (M40)

Public Health Program (E70)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (P01)

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Vehicle tragedies are the #1 one killer of children in the US, yet a comprehensive program to teach parents how to protect them in and around vehicles did NOT exist without (KAC). This is possibly one of the deadliest omissions in the history of child safety initiatives. While a great deal of emphasis is placed on car seat safety, there are many other dangers children face in and around vehicles. Some of these dangers include backovers, frontovers, heatstroke, power window strangulation or injury, trunk entrapment, carbon monoxide, etc. In many cases, a family member is the one responsible when these tragedies occur, making them even more devastating. There is a lack of support for those who accidentally cause the death of another. KAC provides a connected community of emotional support and advocacy for these families. KAC maintains the only national database for all nontraffic incidents and conducts research to identify emerging trends and solutions.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

EDUCATION & AWARENESS has provided over one million ‘Look Before You Lock’ parent education cards to more than 650 hospital birthing centers nationwide. The safety education cards are designed to educate parents at the very beginning of their child’s life about the dangers of children being unknowingly left behind or getting into vehicles on their own.

Population(s) Served

The purpose of this program is to educate safety professionals and provide tools for them to inform the public about the dangerous blindzones behind all vehicles.  Forty-eight children are treated in US hospital emergency rooms and at least 2 children die after being backed over. blindzone kits are for use by police & fire departments, child safety groups, hospitals, driver education programs, etc. that easily determine blindzone measurements for their particular vehicle. A video will be developed to assist users on how blindzones can be determined utilizing 28 inch cones.

The kit will include one 28 inch (the average height of a 1-2 year old) collapsible cone with plastic carrying case, a 75-100 foot measuring tape, instructions on how to correctly measure blindzones, information on Consumer Reports blindzone measurements, KAC brochures and an evaluation form.

Population(s) Served

Data is collected on nontraffic incidents to determine the significance, frequency and severity of injuries and death to children.  The data is then used to educate agencies, organizations, care givers and policy makers about these dangers. was the first organization to recognize and bring to national attention that nontraffic incidents were injuring and killing our children at alarming rates.  "No data, no problem” is how this issue was handled in the past. Data collected on trunk entrapments, leaving children unattended in vehicles, backovers and power window strangulations are all examples of areas that were not commonly understood as causes of significant injury and death to children. These types of incidents were considered "freak accidents” until started collecting these type of data.  These data are necessary to spot trends and continue our quest towards prevention.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Provide support programs for parents and other care givers who have experienced the loss of a child or were a factor in causing the injury or death of their child.

Population(s) Served

There are very few experiences greater in life than the moment a child is born. At that instant the child becomes the most important thing in a parent's life.

Parents, grandparents and caregivers meticulously childproof their homes. They are given a myriad of resources to help them prepare their home so it is safe for their children. Many families even hire professional childproofing experts.

But, what is often overlooked is the need for childproofing vehicles. Children spend more and more time in vehicles and it is of the utmost importance that they travel in a safe and secure environment.

Vehicle-related tragedies are the number one killer of children in the U.S., yet a program to teach parents how to childproof their vehicles does NOT exist. This is quite possibly one of the deadliest omissions in the history of child safety initiatives in our country.

In an effort to help reduce prevalent, but very preventable injuries and deaths, (KAC) is developing the “Childproof Your Vehicle” program that seeks to educate parents and caregivers about the many unknown dangers that vehicles pose to children both on and off the road. The program will provide a comprehensive guide for parents and caregivers on how to ‘childproof’ their vehicles with the same attention and scrutiny as they currently use when childproofing their homes.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of industry standards/practices developed by nonprofit

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Infants and toddlers, Children and youth

Related Program


Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success


Context Notes

Safety modifications that are now standard in vehicles, such as inside the truck releases, pull-up, push-down window switches, rearview cameras, brake-shift interlock.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.’s strength is its steadfast dedication to prevent harm to children/animals in and around cars. We identify and raise public awareness about the dangers brought forward by our proactive data collection. Our unparalleled success in achieving vehicle safety improvements help to reduce human and financial cost of the predictable and preventable vehicle-related incidents. intends to educate caregivers by provide safety guidelines that can be implemented to safeguard their child.

We work towards the inclusion of features in vehicles that protect children, rather than harm them. develops meaningful programs of support and healing through advocacy for those who have experienced the traumatic loss or injury of a child. We encourage families to participate in a variety of ways: sharing their heartbreaking stories, providing support for other families, educating legislators and others; all in the spirit of honoring their child and making the world a safer place for others.

Making vehicle dangers known to stakeholders and to the public at large is critical to prevention. We work to eliminate the pervasive yet preventable incidents through;

Research and data collection are necessary to identify emerging trends, and to quantify the risks that children, animals and others face in and around vehicles. We have published studies in peer-reviewed journals using our unique nontraffic database.

Education and public awareness programs attention to the causes and frequency in which people or animals are harmed in and around vehicles. We communicate proactive ways in which parents, caregivers, drivers, etc. can minimize or potentially eliminate those risks. Unique collaborations and support with other like-minded safety organizations is vital to our success. advocates the need for product redesign and policy change to make cars safer for all.

Our survivor advocacy program works closely with families that have experienced a loss or injury of a child to provide them support, connect them with others who have experienced similar losses and provide a voice for advocating for policy changes to improve safety.

Prior to the work of, nontraffic dangers were not recognized as risks to children.

Nontraffic incidents were brought to the national agenda and is recognized for its expertise and as the primary resource for nontraffic data. leadership are regarded as subject experts, regularly appearing in local, national and international media, both broadcast and print. is invited to provide expert testimony before both Congress and State legislatures.

Because of's advocacy, countless lives have been saved and life-altering injuries avoided. Against all odds, has made permanent changes to vehicles making them safer now that vehicles must be equipped with the following as standard equipment –trunk releases, backup cameras, safer power window switches and brake transmission shift interlock systems.’s safety education materials reach hundreds of thousands of families every year. Additionally, over 1 million Look Before You Lock education cards have been provided to parents via birthing centers nationally. regularly broadcasts PSAs.

One of’s most significant accomplishments has been directly influencing changes in vehicle design and safety features. The adoption of these public policies have saved lives, prevent injury and reduce cost.

These changes were brought about through data collection, education and awareness programs and families successfully advocating for policy change. has been successful in utilizing the media; locally, regionally, nationally and even internationally. This effort has helped raise the public’s awareness on a tremendously large scale.

Families have appreciated’s outreach and emotional support following the loss of their child. has filled a gap in the need for specialized support for parents who inadvertently caused the death of their own children. These programs continue to grow as more and more families reach out for guidance after the most unthinkable loss one could imagine.

New dangers emerge as vehicles evolve. has been and will remain in the forefront of protecting children, animals and others in and around vehicles. Current resources are being exhausted due to the success and need for expansion of all programs.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback


Kids and Cars
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 68.42 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 5.9 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 6% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Kids and Cars

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Kids and Cars

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Kids and Cars

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of Kids and Cars’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

Created in partnership with

Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation -$64,278 -$59,675 $38,129 $11,208 -$26,422
As % of expenses -32.4% -27.6% 23.4% 6.2% -9.9%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation -$64,278 -$59,675 $38,129 $11,208 -$26,422
As % of expenses -32.4% -27.6% 23.4% 6.2% -9.9%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $134,129 $156,407 $200,875 $191,158 $239,465
Total revenue, % change over prior year -32.4% 16.6% 28.4% -4.8% 25.3%
Program services revenue 0.4% 5.5% 20.4% 0.0% 0.0%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.1% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.5%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other grants and contributions 99.5% 94.5% 79.6% 90.7% 99.5%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 9.3% 0.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $198,407 $216,082 $162,746 $179,950 $265,887
Total expenses, % change over prior year 14.1% 8.9% -24.7% 10.6% 47.8%
Personnel 43.6% 40.2% 53.3% 48.3% 32.7%
Professional fees 36.0% 42.4% 40.0% 36.9% 47.0%
Occupancy 1.7% 1.5% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.1% 0.0%
Pass-through 1.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 3.8%
All other expenses 17.7% 15.9% 6.7% 14.8% 16.4%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $198,407 $216,082 $162,746 $179,950 $265,887
One month of savings $16,534 $18,007 $13,562 $14,996 $22,157
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $0 $856 $2,468
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $214,941 $234,089 $176,308 $195,802 $290,512

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 6.5 2.7 10.1 9.8 5.3
Months of cash and investments 6.5 2.7 10.1 9.8 5.3
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 6.5 2.6 6.4 6.5 3.2
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $108,110 $48,435 $136,464 $146,816 $117,926
Investments $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Receivables $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $7,137 $7,137 $7,137 $7,137 $7,137
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 93.3% 93.3% 93.3% 93.3% 93.3%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 0.7% 1.6% 37.0% 33.8% 40.0%
Unrestricted net assets $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Temporarily restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total net assets $107,797 $48,122 $86,251 $97,459 $71,037

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

President & Founder

Ms. Janette E. Fennell

Janette Fennell is the founder and president of, a national nonprofit organization that works to prevent injury and death to children in nontraffic events.  Janette learned that being locked in a car trunk was a horrific ordeal; but her second ordeal was convincing the powerful auto industry and Federal government that trunk entrapment was a significant problem.  Her four-year successful crusade to make car trunks escapable is an excellent case study in the power of survivors to change public policy.  While working on the issue of trunk entrapment, she learned about many other dangers children are exposed to when left alone in or around a motor vehicle.  Ms. Fennell has been the driving force to bring nontraffic incidents to the national agenda.  Before her data collection efforts the magnitude of vehicular injuries and deaths occurring on private property was not known.


Amber Rollins

Amber Rollins is the Director of Ms. Rollins graduated from the University of Kansas (Go Jayhawks!) with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Welfare. Ms. Rollins began her career in injury prevention with in 2005. She is dedicated to managing the day-to-day operations, national education campaigns, major projects and coordinates’s national survivor advocate and volunteer network. She also diligently maintains the organization’s unique national data collection system and database on nontraffic incidents. Ms. Rollins has been featured in hundreds of local and national television, radio and newspaper interviews and regularly conducts safety presentations in the Kansas and Missouri markets. She has testified before the Kansas House and Senate Judiciary Committee and has helped pass legislation on the national and state level. Ms. Rollins is a co-author of a first of it’s kind study published in Traffic Injury Prevention in 2017.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

Kids and Cars

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

Kids and Cars

Board of directors
as of 01/03/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

Ms. Janette Fennell

Term: 2003 - 2025

Alan Gregson

Retired Levi Strauss & Co

Judith Stone

President, Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety

Greg Gulbransen

Pediatrician, Oyster Bay Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine

James Bartimis


Greig Fennell

Retired Comcast

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/2/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation


We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/02/2024

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.