THURSDAY NOVEMBER 26, 2020: PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO- Disasters can arise from flooding caused by heavy rains or property damage from high winds, but more common emergencies involve medical conditions, injuries from accidents, or fires. When caring for young children and those with special needs, learning First Aid provides you with the right knowledge to adequately respond to an emergency. Last week, 17 special education teachers participated in the Red Cross First Aid training programme as part of the Digicel Foundation’s “Preparing You” programme.
Effective first-aid can often mean the difference between life and death. This is even more crucial for individuals with disabilities, especially children. Red Cross First Aid instructors gave the 17 teachers an intense one-day course in practical first-aid techniques. The teachers learned how to treat broken bones, lacerations, and head injuries. They were also taught how to do CPR to maintain blood flow and oxygen levels until emergency help arrives.
“The idea is to use common sense and basic first-aid skills to preserve life, prevent further harm, and assist with recovery,” the instructors explained. Simple accidents, such as slips or trips, might seem a trivial part of the day-to-day hustle and bustle of school life, but they are capable of causing serious injuries and worse. Educating and certifying teachers on how to provide first aid training can be potentially lifesaving.
‘Preparing You!’ aims to build capacity in the area of disaster risk reduction. The teachers recently completed training sessions with the ODPM (Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management) and the TT Fire Services. The sessions focused on fire safety, how to prepare and execute an evacuation plan, and even how to create their own first-aid and emergency kits.
“At the Digicel Foundation we felt this was an important facet of teacher training,” explained Natalie-Anne De Silva, Project Officer. “Lately, a lot of us feel as though we’re in a perpetual emergency. If only for ease of mind, it’s good to have a plan in place that covers communication, evacuation, and having the necessary equipment available to deal with any dangers.”
As part of capacity building under the ‘Preparing You!’ programme, the Digicel Foundation received 100 first-aid kits from the Red Cross which will be distributed to beneficiary schools in early December.