The Lloydminster Region Health Foundation (LRHF) gave a lifesaving tool to the Vic Juba Community Theatre earlier this month.
The LRHF presented the general manager of the theatre an automated external defibrillator (AED), one of many that the health foundation would be rolling out over the coming month.
Christine Muyres, executive assistant of the LRHF, presented the AED on behalf of the organization, and said that foundation started an initiative in the community called the Heartbeat of the Community.
“We are getting sponsorships for 35 AED machines that we will be installing in non-profit organizations within our communities and some outlining areas around Lloydminster,” she said.
Muyres said that the one that the LRHF presented to the Vic Juba Community Theatre was the third out of the 35 that the health foundation has pushed to getting out into the community.
“We are still going through the process of getting the logistics of getting the rest out into the community,” she said.
Marc Quinn, general manager of the theatre, said that having the AED on hand now gives the theatre staff and volunteers an extra hand in possibly saving someone’s life.
“We always knew that we would need a AED in the theatre, and when we started researching the program, that is when the hospital contacted us,” he said.
Quinn said that when the LRHF announced that they would be donating a machine to the theatre, staff at the theatre were pleased.
“The theatre was at the top of their list and we were thrilled to have been able to put it all together.”
Along with the AED, the volunteers and the staff at the theatre were given a training session for the new machine.
“We don’t give a lot of training sessions for our staff and volunteers, so when this opportunity came along and the foundation said that they were not only prepared to send someone to install the unit but also to train people on how to use it… we extended the invitation to all of our volunteers and our staff members,” said Quinn.
There were about 20 people on hand from volunteers, board members, and staff during the training session that ran for an hour.
Muyres explained that the federal government and the Heart and Stroke Foundation provides AED machines for all of the schools and arenas, so the LRHF decided to provide in areas that didn’t have the machines with one.
“The areas that don’t have them are generally areas that are senior buildings … so we decided that places that have a little bit higher traffic of the population that might require a AED on occasion,” said Muyres, adding that by December, the LRHF hopes to have all of the AED’s to the locations that they will be stationed.
“If we don’t have them out by the middle of December, we will pick it up at the beginning of January.”