In September of 2019, a friend of mine, a deaf man with autism, met an elderly man to sell him a bike. During the exchange, the man collapsed. Unsure of what to do, and unable to call 911 due to his deafness, my friend panicked. He texted his friends, who called 911 for him, but by the time paramedics arrived, the customer had already passed due to sudden cardiac arrest.
This friend was heartbroken and asked me to teach him CPR.
As a deaf woman fluent in ASL and licensed to teach CPR, I borrowed equipment from a local hospital and taught my first deaf-accessible CPR class. I welcomed a group of deaf folks, including several with autism and other developmental disabilities and we worked together to ensure that every one of them left the class knowing how to perform CPR.
This experience taught me the importance of ensuring that all people are able to access CPR classes. It is now my mission to acquire my own CPR training equipment so that I can teach the members of my community.
A grant from the Awesome Foundation would cover nearly all of the equipment needed to teach the first 50 students! This includes the CPR manikins, training AEDs, training shields, and training masks as well as most of the student workbooks. Most of these materials can be used for years, ensuring that the grant is a lasting investment.
Funded by Chicago, IL (October 2020)