“The gist of our grant appeal was that we have a group of seniors who unload our trucks from Feeding America, Costco, and other local stores, two days a week for three hours each day,” says Tom Bullaro, director of the Pantry.
“These volunteers also load food into about 200 cars each Saturday for five hours. All the work is outside in the heat much of the year — and is strenuous. The average age of our volunteers is more than 70. We asked for money for a defibrillator in case one of these individuals were to have a health emergency one day.”
A person whose heart stops from sudden cardiac arrest must get help within 10 minutes to survive, according to theNational Institutes of Health (NIH). The NIH also advises that an external defibrillator can restore a normal heartbeat by sending an electric pulse or shock to the heart.
Bullaro says one of the Pantry's volunteers has already been trained in basic medical support. Further, we will get instruction to give all the Pantry workers a class in how to use this device.
“Importantly, once this defibrillator is available, we shall let others know where it is located. It can then be used by anyone using the classroom building or Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission.
“We are so appreciative of this grant from Publix Charities” says Bullaro. “Publix has been extremely generous to us in recent years, helping us with a variety of purchases, many of which were aimed at increasing the safety of our environment for our volunteers. We thank them for everything they have done for us!”
UPDATE: Our defibrillator has now been received and is installed in the center of the classroom hallway.