The first class of MyPI (My Preparedness Initiative) was held in Crowley County the first week of April.  A huge thank you goes out to the fire departments in the towns of Crowley and Olney Springs, and especially to Justan Grafel for his coordination and help with class instruction.  MyPI is a national program offered through CSU Extension 4-H designed to train youth, ages 13 to 19, to be prepared for emergency situations.  After instruction, each class member is required to develop a preparedness plan and contact list for their family and six others.  They also have to put together a preparedness kit to be used if they have to shelter in place.  These kits are to include food and supplies for three days.

Youth are instructed in Fire and Utility safety, Light Search and Rescue, Medical Emergencies, Terrorism Emergencies, Disaster Psychology, Disaster Preparedness, and the CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) organization.  By the end of the class the members are certified in CPR and AED use and become members of a Youth CERT, to be utilized in evacuation centers and other emergency and non-emergency events to assist adult fire departments, sheriff departments, and EMS (Emergency Medical Services).  Hands-on demonstrations in fire extinguisher use, vehicle extrication, and an up close and personal viewing of a Flight for Life helicopter were also offered as class content.

Thank you to Andy Hartless for donating his time instructing the medical and CPR classes, providing breakfast, and the cost of the CPR/AED certifications.  The Crowley County fire department for the use of their classroom.  Huff Fire Extinguishers for filling the fire extinguishers used in the demonstration.  JR’s Country Store for donating supper one evening during class.  Carman Hernandez for car used in the extrication demonstration and Greg Carly for delivery and pickup of the car.  And last, but not least, to Colorado Care Connect crew for bringing the helicopter to the Crowley County Heritage Center and answering questions form the class and public about the helicopter and their services.

Individuals, counties, or organizations interested in having youth or adults certified in the CERT program are encourage to contact Bruce Fickenscher through their local CSU Extension office in the Southeast Area.

For more information, contact your local Extension Office:  Baca County 719-523-6971, Bent County 719-456-0764, Cheyenne County 719-767-5716, Crowley County 719-267-5243, Kiowa County 719-438-5321, Otero County 719-254-7608, Prowers County 719-336-7734 or your local health department.  Find us on the web at:  CSU Extension offers up-to-date, unbiased, research-based information to families in Southeast Colorado.  CSU Extension programs are available to all without discrimination.

Submitted to BARN Media by: 

Bruce Fickenscher
CSU Extension/Southeast Area

By Tucker Allmer - The BARN

Tucker Allmer & the BARN are members of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB), the Colorado FFA Foundation, the Colorado 4H Foundation, the Colorado Farm Show Marketing Committee, 1867 Club Board Member, Denver Ag & Livestock Club Member, the Weld County Fair Board, the Briggsdale FFA Advisory Council, Briggsdale 4H Club Beef Leader & Founder / Coordinator of the Briggsdale Classic Open Jackpot Show.

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