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Two to receive training on fire and fall prevention

The Wellington North Fire Service and Victorian Order of Nurses have been awarded scholarships to participate in a training conference dedicated to Remembering When™: A Fire and Fall Prevention Program for Older Adults, developed by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

Fire Prevention Officer of Wellington North Fire Service Jason Benn and Kelly Gee, client care coordinator of Victorian Order of Nurses, Mount Forest site will travel to Boston for the workshop. The awarded scholarships provide for travel expenses for the two participants, Remembering When™ curriculum materials and all training.

The conference will be held Dec. 2 to 4, 2012, in Boston, Massachusetts.

NFPA has selected two-member teams from 37 communities across the United States and Canada to participate. Teams are comprised of one fire department member partnered with an individual from an agency within the community that serves older adults through home visits, such as visiting nurses associations, home health care agencies and places of worship.

“Adults 65 years and older are more than twice as likely to be killed in a home fire compared to the population at large, and falls are the leading cause of death from injuries in this group,” said Sharon Gamache, program director of High-Risk Outreach Programs, “This training offers strategies that participants can bring back to share with their communities to help prevent fires and falls among older adults that live there.”

The Remembering When™ program focuses on 16 key fire and fall prevention messages.

Some of the messages include:

•    To prevent fires, space heaters should be kept at least 3 feet (1 meter) from anything that can burn and unplugged when no one’s home or at bedtime.

•    While cooking, older adults should wear tight fitting clothing or short sleeves so clothes don’t ignite from the stove.

•     People should never leave cooking unattended or cook if drowsy from medicine or alcohol.

To prevent falls, older adults should exercise to improve balance and build strength.  Consulting a doctor first about ability-appropriate exercise is best.  To prevent falls in the home, it’s important to clear stairs and hallways of electrical cords, shoes, books, magazines, clothing and any other things that can be tripped over.

Following the workshop, Wellington North Fire Service will conduct a minimum of five group presentations and at least two train-the-trainer sessions for Victorian Order of Nurses.

The Victorian Order of Nurses will integrate materials from the Remembering When program into its outreach through home visits.

NFPA is committed to helping communities reduce fire and fall injuries and deaths among older adults. The Remembering When™program has been implemented in communities throughout North American since 1999, reaching thousands of older adults.

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