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Small steps to saving lives

LOCAL youngsters at Child’s Play Early Learning in South Hobart are taking their first steps in learning how to save lives.

The early learners were treated to a special lesson by Josie Saunders from Cool Kids First Aid, who walked the children through what to do in the event of an emergency.

Founded by Angela Quinn and Natascha Mazeruk, the Cool Kids First Aid journey started 18 years ago when Mrs Mazurek, then a nurse in the accident and emergency department of the Frankston Hospital, watched a mother in her mid-30s die on arrival due to a suspected brain haemorrhage resulting from a fall in the bathroom.

The woman’s only child, a three-year-old daughter, sat with her for almost three hours before her father came home and called the ambulance.

Mrs Mazeruk said that if the daughter had any training, she would have been potentially able to save her mother’s life.

“She would have known what to do and would definitely not have had to sit there for hours with no help,” she said.

This experience sparked a realisation that kids are simply not taught what to do in an emergency.

This, coupled with Ms Mazeruk’s sister Angela Quinn’s passion for teaching kids, sparked the creation of Cool Kids First Aid.

“The distraught child I met 18 years ago had no idea what to do in an emergency, so simply stayed by her mother’s side,” Mrs Mazurek said.

“We believe it’s the small things that can save a life, like teaching kids how to recognise an emergency situation, how to control bleeding, rolling a person into the recovery position and calling 000.

“I know this kind of education could potentially have saved a life that day and this is what Cool Kids First Aid delivers.”

The Cool Kids First Aid team has since been delivering programs to children across Australia with overwhelmingly positive feedback.

“This interactive program captured our kinder children to the extent that they are still role playing first aid skills,” Beth Mason, from Goodstart Early Learning, said.

“It is an innovative way to inspire, empower and prepare children.”

Mrs Quinn said they knew this program was important because there was such a lack in the market for it.

“However, we didn’t realise the full gravity of the need until we started receiving the large volume of calls for bookings,” she said.

Following the session, an emergency kit is left with each centre so kids can use this in their role play, further reinforcing their learning.

Cool Kids First Aid has produced an app to simulate how to dial 000, as well as written a children’s book, ‘What to do in an Emergency, with Lexi and Leo’, which is used as an interactive tool in their lessons.

“Our aim is for every child in Australia to understand the basics of what to do in an emergency, and potentially save the life of someone they love,” Mrs Mazurek said.

Caption: Children at Child’s Play Early Learning in South Hobart received a crash course in emergency training.

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About the Author: Hobart Observer

The Hobart Observer is your monthly community newspaper, reaching over 24,000 homes and businesses in and around the City of Hobart. It is the product of Nicolas Turner, Justine Brazil, Ben Hope, Simon Andrews, Tobias Hinds and guest contributors, with support from advertisers.

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