Paramedics in the Park teaches, and reaches out to students, public

By Roderick Benns

Paramedics in the Park teaches, and reaches out to students, public
Deputy Chief Derek Brown, top left, at one of the many teaching stations.

A spring storm threatened but never delivered on preventing more than 200 students — and many more members of the public — from experiencing the tenth anniversary of Paramedics in the Park in Lindsay.

School teachers from nearby schools descended at Victoria Park with their students to experience education stations on CPR, what to expect when you call 911, severe allergies and Epi Pens, Tick Talk, and basic wound dressing.

A barbecue was donated by Boston Pizza of Lindsay, with all proceeds from the lunch donated to the Paramedic Ride in support of the National Paramedic Memorial Foundation.

“We started this simply as a way for people to get a look at our ambulances 10 years ago,” says Deputy Chief Derek Brown, of City of Kawartha Lakes Paramedic Service.

“It turned into an education opportunity for the kids, and a way to get to know our paramedics better,” Brown says, who adds that all paramedics volunteer their time for this event.

Kawartha Lakes Police Service also took part in the day, given how closely they work with paramedics. An officer from the K-9 unit talked to groups of students about their work, for instance, and held a question and answer session with the young people. Representation from the OPP was also at the event.

The City of Kawartha Lakes Paramedic Service also made a point of honouring citizens who had jumped in to perform a life-saving action.

As Brown explains in an earlier Advocate story, “Over the years we, along with other agencies, have acknowledged members of the public who went above and beyond to assist when a true life-threatening situation was happening. The ceremony at Paramedics in the Park has become our opportunity to tell a couple of very positive stories with successful outcomes where citizens have performed CPR, and the patient survived. It’s an opportunity to encourage people to learn the skill and see that there are real life examples of how someone’s life can be saved.”

This year, the honourees were John Spooner, Don Farrow and Dave Kilner, and Christine Buchanan, who were honoured in a ceremony during the event.

The City of Kawartha Lakes has about 3,059 square kilometres of territory to cover. It is served by 20 full-time Primary Care Paramedics and 20 full-time Advanced Care Paramedics. These staff are supported by an additional 40 part-time paramedics and a Logistics Technician.

— with files from Geoff Coleman.

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