Teacher saves his toddler’s life

On a beautiful day in spring, Jean-Gilles, a physical education teacher in Sudbury, was getting ready to leave the house. “I was in the driveway when I heard my wife call out my name.”

“Our two-year-old was choking on a hot dog. My wife panicked and then she remembered I’d know what to do and knew I did,” he recalls.

Jean-Gilles rushed in the house and gave his son abdominal thrusts, an act that saved his life. “I remembered the feeling of practicing it with my students and the training just took over. As a parent, it was strange to have to do it on my own son,” he adds.
Every year, Jean-Gilles empowers his students with lifesaving CPR and AED skills as part of the physical education curriculum.

“It’s a life skill. Every kid knows someone who’s affected by heart conditions, or other health problems. If something happens, they’ll be able to act,” he says about the importance of the classes he teaches. “Learning CPR is a no brainer, it’s like learning how to walk,” he emphasizes.

The ACT High School CPR and AED Program was set up in Bishop Alexander Carter Catholic Secondary School in partnership with lead community partner Vale and other community partners, provincial partners, the Government of Ontario, Hydro One, and The Ontario Trillium Foundation, and ACT’s national health partners, AstraZeneca Canada, Sanofi Canada, Amgen Canada.

The Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation is the award-winning, national charitable organization dedicated to establishing free CPR and AED training programs in high schools across Canada. ACT raises funds to donate mannequins and teacher training to schools, and guides schools in program set-up and long-term sustainability. Over 3.2 million youth have been trained in CPR by their teachers through this lifesaving program to date.

Sudbury Student’s Life Saved with CPR

One afternoon in February, students Jordan Hambley and Jordan Wood-Spadafore were sitting on the stairs in front of their school waiting for the bus to arrive when they saw a younger student collapse in front of them.

“I went up and asked him if he was okay, but he didn’t respond,” recalls Jordan H.

“As Jordan H. ran to the main office for help, I stayed by the boy’s side. I panicked, but I remembered my high school CPR class and knew I had to do something, so I put him in the recovery position and checked his vital signs,” shares Jordan W.

Teacher Kyle Gutscher, who was made aware of the incident quickly went to get his CPR trained colleague, Mr. Craig Flanagan. While the vice principal, Mr. Wilson called 911, Jordan H. returned with Mr.Flanagan. and the Lively District Secondary School principal, Ms. Leslie Mantle. The principal and the teacher quickly saw the boy had no vital signs and knew they had to start CPR. Brian Schouten, a Grade 12 student ran to get the school defibrillator.
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During that time, Dylan Brown, a Grade 8 student saw what was going on from the bus. “Dylan is a good friend of the boy, and he immediately wanted to help. He remembered that his friend Lucas Howlands’ mom, Charlene Howland was picking him up at school and that she was a nurse. So Dylan immediately sent a text to Lucas about what was happening,” says Ms. Mantle. When Lucas and Charlene saw the text, they immediately rushed to the scene.

Working as a team, Charlene and Mr. Flanagan started performing chest compressions and artificial respiration on the young boy, while staff member Ms. Mathias helped guide by counting out loud.

The boy started breathing shortly before the paramedics arrived. Today, the student is alive thanks to the team effort of so many that day. Each and every one of their actions played an integral role in the chain of survival that helped save the life of a student during a sudden cardiac arrest.

“After this experience, I approached my physical education teacher and asked to have a CPR refresher course,” shares Jordan H. “Knowing CPR gave me the necessary confidence to take responsibility and react immediately,” he adds.

“I have been teaching the ACT Foundation CPR and AED program since it was first introduced to the high school students. It is an amazing program and is one of the most beneficial, not to mention life saving skills that our Grade 9 students learn and take with them for the rest of their lives. I am very proud of our students for knowing how to react in an emergency situation and for using their learned skills from the ACT Program to help save a fellow student’s life,” says physical education teacher, Kimberly Chezzi.

The ACT High School CPR and AED program was set up in Lively District Secondary School in partnership with lead community partner Vale and other community partners, provincial partners, the Government of Ontario, Hydro One and Ontario Trillium Foundation and ACT’s national health partners, AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada and Sanofi Canada.

The Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation is an award-winning, national charitable organization dedicated to establishing free CPR and AED training programs in high schools across Canada. ACT raises funds to donate mannequins and teacher training to schools, and guides schools in program set-up and long-term sustainability. Over 3.2 million youth have been trained in CPR by their teachers through this lifesaving program to date.

Vale and ACT strengthening the health of Greater Sudbury with donation of more than 150 CPR mannequins

SUDBURY, ON – 10:00 a.m. – Following the release of the new CPR guidelines last week, Vale in partnership with the Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation, is donating more than 150 mannequins to local high schools today. To celebrate this initiative, high school students will perform CPR techniques and show how to use a defibrillator in a dynamic demonstration. The media event will be held at the Lasalle Secondary School, 1545 Kennedy Street Sudbury, at 10:00 a.m.

“These mannequins are excellent tools that will help students learn vital life saving techniques,” said Angie Robson, Manager of Corporate and Aboriginal Affairs for Vale’s Ontario Operations. “The ACT Foundation provides outstanding CPR and defibrillator training programs and Vale is proud to support such an important initiative that enhances health and safety in our community.”

Thanks to this key enhancement, more than 3,000 students from the Conseil scolaire catholique du Nouvel-Ontario, Conseil scolaire public du Grand Nord de l’Ontario, Rainbow District School Board and the Sudbury Catholic District School Board are empowered to save lives every year by their teachers through the ACT High School CPR and Defibrillator Training Program.

“What a terrific program. Teaching students how to save a life is a skill they can carry for a lifetime,” said Glenn Thibeault, MPP for Sudbury. “I want to thank Vale for donating these new mannequins for schools. I also want to thank the ACT Foundation, AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Sanofi, The Ontario Trillium Foundation, and Hydro One for their generous support. The Ontario government is proud to be part of such a worth-while initiative.”

The ACT Foundation is the national charitable organization that is establishing CPR and defibrillator training programs in high schools throughout Canada. The program is built on ACT’s award-winning community-based model of partnerships and support. Thanks to the support of ACT’s community partners with Vale as lead community partner, provincial partners Government of Ontario, the Ontario Trillium Foundation and Hydro One, and health partners AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada, Sanofi Canada, the CPR and Defibrillator Training program was set up in all Sudbury High Schools in 2013.

With eight in 10 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occurring at home or in public places, empowering youth with CPR training as part of their high school education will help increase citizen CPR response rates over the long term. Moreover, early CPR, combined with early defibrillation, can increase survival rates for cardiac arrest victims by up to 75%, according to the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

“We are thrilled with this new support from Vale,” said Sandra Clarke, the ACT Foundation’s Executive Director. “With it, we can strengthen the program in the Sudbury high schools, ensuring all students graduate with the skills to save a life.”

To date, the ACT Foundation has set up the ACT High School CPR Program in more than 1,700 high schools nation-wide, empowering more than 2.9 million youth to save lives.

About the ACT Foundation

The ACT Foundation is the national charitable organization that is creating a culture of lifesaving™ by establishing the CPR and AED program in Canadian high schools. The program is built on ACT’s award-winning community-based model of partnerships and support, whereby ACT finds local partners who donate the mannequins and AED training units that schools need to set up the program. High school teachers then teach CPR and how to use a defibrillator to their students as a regular part of the curriculum, reaching all youth prior to graduation. ACT’s partners who are committed to bringing the program to Ontario are the Government of Ontario, the Ontario Trillium Foundation and Hydro One, and our national health partners, AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada and Sanofi Canada.

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For further information, please contact:

Nives Jahibasic
Communications Coordinator
ACT Foundation
comms@actfoundation.ca
Tel: 613-729-3455
Toll: 800-465-9111
www.actfoundation.ca
www.youtube.com/theactfoundation

Angie Robson
Manager, Aboriginal and Corporate Affairs
Vale Canada Ltd., Ontario Operations
705-682-5202
angie.robson@vale.com

Sudbury teacher saves daughter from choking

Claire had just finished dinner when her 12-year-old daughter, Véronique, began chatting away about her day.

It was just a few weeks after Easter in 2007, and Véronique was eating mini chocolate eggs as she spoke. After handing a chocolate to her mother, she put another one in her mouth.

“Véronique must have inhaled at the same time because I turned around to see her raise her hands and grasp her neck”, says Claire. The egg was stuck. “I asked her if she could swallow and she indicated that she couldn’t. I told her I was going to do the Heimlich Manoeuvre.”

Claire, an English teacher at École secondaire catholique Champlain, learned the Heimlich Manoeuvre just a few months earlier thanks to the ACT High School CPR Program. Trained to teach the ACT Program to their students, the school’s physical education teachers decided to offer CPR training to members of the faculty as well.

Claire did as she was taught. She positioned herself behind her daughter and gave a strong thrust. The chocolate egg came flying out.

“My daughter was surprised by how forcefully the egg flew out. She started to cry,” says Claire.

She says her daughter’s next words were ones a mother could never forget.

“She looked at me and said ‘Mom, you saved my life,’” says the teacher.

While the incident lasted but a few minutes, Claire says it was an overwhelming one for both mother and daughter. “All night long I thought of what could have happened had I not known what to do,” she says. “The next day at school I thanked the two teachers who gave me the training – without it, I might not have known what to do.”

Claire says she will never forget the value of her skills and believes that all schools should have the ACT High School CPR Program. “I had been telling myself for years that I should learn it,” she says.

The ACT High School CPR Program was made possible at École secondaire catholique Champlain thanks to generous community and provincial-level support which enabled the donation of mannequins, teacher training and curriculum resources. Community partners in Sudbury are Inco Limited, the Sudbury Regional Hospital Emergency Physicians Group, and Tracks and Wheels. Provincial partners of the program are the Government of Ontario, Hydro One, Shoppers Drug Mart, and The Ontario Trillium Foundation.

The Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation is an award-winning, national charitable organization dedicated to establishing CPR in high schools across Canada. ACT raises funds to donate mannequins, teacher training, manuals and other materials to schools, and guides schools in program set-up and long-term sustainability. Teachers teach CPR to their students as a regular part of the curriculum. Over 900,000 youth have been trained in CPR through this lifesaving program to date.

Core partners supporting the program in Ontario and throughout Canada are companies in the research-based pharmaceutical industry: AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada, Pfizer Canada and sanofi-aventis. They provide ACT’s sustaining funding and are committed to the Foundation’s national goal of promoting health and empowering Canadians to save lives.