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N.C. Red Cross Gets Mannequins, Defibrillators for Training

NEW BERN, N.C.--The Coastal Carolina chapter of the American Red Cross has two dozen new mannequins and defibrillators that will be used during first-aid training in a four-county area.

Those fake people ultimately help real people, said Terri Fisher, the health and safety director for the chapter. The group serves Craven, Carteret, Jones and Pamlico counties.

We had a young woman, a 19-year-old lifeguard, who took our CPR class, Fisher said. She was on her way home from work when she saw this man on a bicycle in cardiac arrest. She knew how to respond.

The new mannequins 20 adults and four infants were bought with a $12,500 from the Harold H. Bate Foundation. The New Bern-based philanthropic organization funds projects to improve life, education and recreation in Craven, Jones and Pamlico counties and East Carolina University.

That money absolutely makes a difference, Fisher said Friday. We always get good feedback from trainees after they ve worked on the mannequins. Working on a fake person before you work on a real one can make all the difference in the world.

This is a big deal for us because it allows us to give our rescuers hands-on practice not just a lecture and a video while they re in training.

On Monday night, the chapter is hosting an event at Fire Station 35 in Jasper. From 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., attendees will be able to see the mannequins, along with masks and injury-makeup kits that were also purchased with the grant money.

Chapter leaders hope the event will encourage more people to take first-aid training. The chapter has recently trained about 3,500 people in first-aid response, but wants to double that figure for the area it serves. Free classes are offered every Saturday at the chapter s New Bern office on South Glenburnie Street.

This grant will save lives; this training will save lives, said Jeff Payne, the emergency services manager. What it means is that our fire people, our rescue people, our emergency responders are ready to go when the situation is critical.

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