Today I had a tremendous opportunity to spend a day with young people. I partnered with the La Crosse Health Science Academy and taught CPR at a Youth Leadership Camp. The theme of the day was the “Heart of a Leader”. In the morning, the students listened to their hearts, checked their pulses at rest and after exercise, and learned how to take their blood pressure. After a fantastic lunch of Indian Fry Bread tacos, I led a Family and Friends CPR class. Six adults from the community and 16 Lakota youth partnered with the 10 academy youth (from Central, Logan, and Aquinas) and their teachers to practice hands in CPR on adult, child, and infant mannequins. Although it seemed a little like “mass confusion” at times, most felt they would remember to call 911 and push hard and fast. One young Lakota girl thanked me, saying she needed to learn this because her grandfather had a bad heart. The interactions between the young people were motivating. They demonstrated patience, enthusiasm, leadership, determination, and friendship. It was truly an awesome experience!
By Lynette Dobbins