Rock climbing is just one of the many activities children with developmental disabilities will most likely never get to experience. But thanks to one organization, and some generous firefighters who gave their time, nine kids and young adults with special needs from Spokane, Wash., got the opportunity to trek up an indoor climbing wall.
Courageous Kids Climbing is an Idaho-based organization of rock climbers who teach children with special needs how to climb at organized free events. When they recently came to Spokane, the local fire department’s special operations team wanted to lend a helping hand. Firefighters helped the kids ascend and descend the indoor rock faces, and brought special equipment and harnesses to help lift the participants so they could experience climbing.
At the end of the fun, long day of climbing, the firefighters gave everyone a tour of their rig.
We give a thumbs up to the Spokane Fire Department for donating their time to a truly priceless cause and to the local rock climbing gym Wild Walls for lending their space for such an awesome event. Of course, we also give a big thumbs up to the Courageous Kids Climbing group for organizing and developing an impactful program.
High School Heroes
When high school junior Priya Pohani learned that 31 states require CPR training for high school students before graduation, she was disappointed to find it didn’t include her home state of Florida. This inspired her to make a change at her school. Pohani said that although she didn’t feel like she had the power to affect statewide legislation, she could make an impact on her campus.
Pohani created the Heart Health Awareness club at Eastside High School in Gainesville, Fla., at the beginning of the 2015-2016 academic year. It was created to “spread awareness about the importance of heart health and CPR,” which was expertly demonstrated at one of the group’s first events. Pohani and the club organized a CPR training course one Saturday at the school’s gym, with portions of the admission price going toward the purchase of an AED for a nearby school. With the help of GatorCPR, a local CPR training organization, several students learned lifesaving techniques they may have never learned otherwise.
We give a thumbs up to Pohani for taking direct action to benefit her community by creating the Heart Health Awareness club. We applaud the club for putting on such an important event, and we hope they continue their critical educational efforts.
A young boy from Chandler, Ariz., is going from baseball player to local hero after saving his coach’s life. The two were alone running drills on a spring afternoon when 26-year-old Isaac Wenrich collapsed after having a massive heart attack. Thirteen-year-old Nathan Boyer said at first he thought his coach was joking, but when Boyer kept asking Wenrich if he was okay, he got no answer.
Boyer grabbed his coach’s cell phone and dialed 9-1-1, alerting first responders to the situation. He hung up-and it was in that moment that some of Boyer’s Boy Scout training came to the forefront of his memory. He began chest compressions, and continued to administer CPR for four minutes until medics arrived. Wenrich and his appreciative family members agree that if it weren’t for Boyd’s quick action, he wouldn’t be alive.
We give a thumbs up to Boyd for keeping a cool head in the middle of a scary situation, and for successfully saving his coach’s life.