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MEDIA ADVISORY: Five local Girl Scouts drive efforts to train hundreds in hands-only CPR; helps Muirlands Middle School become first public school in state to garner Heart Safe School Accreditation from Sudden Arrhythmia Death Syndrome Foundation

MEDIA ADVISORY: Five local Girl Scouts drive efforts to train hundreds in hands-only CPR; helps Muirlands Middle School become first public school in state to garner Heart Safe School Accreditation from Sudden Arrhythmia Death Syndrome Foundation
Posted on 10/10/2018

San Diego Unified School District

Media Advisory from the San Diego Unified School District, Oct. 10, 2018

Five local Girl Scouts drive efforts to train hundreds in hands-only CPR; helps Muirlands Middle School become first public school in state to garner Heart Safe School Accreditation from Sudden Arrhythmia Death Syndrome Foundation

Five local students from La Jolla Girl Scout Troop 3803, Selma Hyytinen, Maggie Johnson, Natalie Saham, Allison Foerster and Amber Watt, have been raising community awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and have assisted in the training of more than 600 middle school students and staff members in Hands-Only CPR/AED (Automated External Defibrillator) use. While working toward their Girl Scout Silver Award, the troop also completed the Sudden Arrhythmia Death Syndromes Foundation's (SADS) Heart Safe School accreditation process to make Muirlands Middle School the first public school in California to achieve this distinction. The students, the school, and the organizations (Girl Scouts of San Diego, San Diego Project Heart Beat, American Heart Association - San Diego) that assisted them in their efforts will be recognized in a brief ceremony on Oct. 12.

WHEN: Friday, Oct. 12, 10 a.m.

WHERE: Muirlands Middle School, 1056 Nautilus St. (92037)

DETAILS:

Members of Girl Scout Troop 3803 will briefly explain their Girls Scout Silver Project and the SADS Foundation accreditation process, then introduce speakers from organizations that were instrumental in helping them achieve this and other milestones.

SPEAKERS:

  • Geoff Martin, Muirlands Principal and/or Jeffrey Luna, Muirlands Vice Principal
  • Selma Hyytinen, Maggie Johnson, Natalie Saham, Allison Foerster and Amber Watt (Girl Scouts of Troop 3803)
  • Carol Dedrich, CEO, Girl Scouts San Diego
  • Shana Contreiras, Director of CPR in Schools, American Heart Association
  • Cindy Marten, San Diego Unified School District Superintendent

BACKGROUND:

Heart Safe School Accreditation for Muirlands Middle School is the culmination of a four-year journey for the girls in troop 3803 that began after one girls' father went into cardiac arrest while working out. CPR saved his life.

In 2014, Troop 3803 began partnering with San Diego Project Heart Beat to provide CPR/AED training to elementary and middle schools in La Jolla. To expand their efforts, the girls reached out to San Diego Unified School District for assistance. In 2016, the district partnered with the American Heart Association, County Supervisor Ron Roberts, and the County of San Diego, who provided a $100,000 grant to purchase Hands-only CPR training kits for students across the district. These additional kits helped the students train more students at Bird Rock Elementary, where their efforts began, and Muirlands Middle.

The Heart Safe School Accreditation program consists of 7 elements aimed at raising awareness and preventing sudden cardiac arrest. These include: Screening/Risk Assessment, Care Plans, Emergency Medical Response Drills, Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs), CPR Training for Staff, CPR Training for Students and Sudden Cardiac Awareness Activity/Event/Fundraiser.

To achieve this accreditation, the girls:

  • Prepared a presentation about their intention and met with then Principal Harlan Klein to gain his approval to begin the accreditation process.
  • Reached out to San Diego Project Heart Beat to request Hands-Only CPR/AED training for the school's entire 7th grade class of more than 300 students in 2017 and again in 2018.
  • Assisted in each of the 12 training sessions in 2017 and 2018 (six per year).
  • Studied information on the SADS website about Emergency Medical Drills, prepared detailed checklists, and then collaborated with Muirlands' staff to run drills at the school.
  • Conducted, timed, and videotaped three Emergency Medical Drills.
  • Trained fellow students how to use the Pulse Point app to locate nearby AEDs.
  • Created and funded an “Identify the Most AEDs” contest to educate Muirlands Middle students about where these life-saving devices are located throughout the community.
  • Raised awareness of Sudden Cardiac Arrest by hosting a booth at the Muirlands Rocks community festival in May 2018.

The girls have since moved on from Muirlands Middle School and attend other La Jolla- area schools, including La Jolla High, The Bishop's School and Francis Parker, where they are continuing their efforts to train students in Hands-only CPR.

Please confirm you coverage.

CONTACT: Jennifer Rodriguez, Communications, 619-847-6029, jrodriguez6@sandi.net

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