boston marathon

  • Seeking to raise first aid awareness

    Ninth months ago, two bombs went off near the finish line of one of the biggest marathon events in the world. This event changed the city of Boston forever — not in a negative way as some would think, but instead transformed Boston into Boston Strong.

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    “We never thought it was going to happen so close to home,” said Meryl Prendergast, a team member of one of Canton High School’s Community Problem Solving (CmPS) teams. “But now, almost a year has passed since April 15, and we’ve fallen back into that same mentality: It’s never going to happen here. We asked ourselves, ‘If Canton is faced with a similar emergency in the future, could Canton become Canton Strong?’”

    With that question in mind, the CmPS team has set out on a mission to help Canton citizens become more aware of first aid techniques, including AED training and tourniquets.

    “We all assume that we know what to do in times of emergency,” said team member Sean Hanscom. “However, do we really? So many people know how to perform CPR, which is great, but that wouldn’t really have come in handy during the Boston Marathon. People need to be aware of other first aid techniques so they won’t panic when and if something ever happens.”

    The team, which consists of ninth grade students Forest Schmidt, Hanscom, Prendergast, and Dasol Lee, is currently in the process of planning ways to raise awareness in the community. One major idea that they have is the creation of a phone app containing first aid instructions, videos, and other material that can be accessed by anyone at any time. They are also currently in the process of contacting people who may be able to help this project grow.

    “If we handed out pieces of paper with explanations on first aid techniques, most people would just end up losing them,” said Schmidt. “That’s why we love the app idea. Anyone who has a phone would be able to download the app, and they would have this information in their pockets 24/7. Of course, having the information on paper is important, and we’ll still hand out brochures and other such items. However, the app would definitely help us reach more people.”

    Canton wishes this CmPS team, Team Band-Aid, good luck as they work toward strengthening our community and preparing the citizens for emergencies.

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