Learning to PARTY safely

Elk Valley kids have been learning to make good decisions as part of the party and risk related trauma in youth (PARTY) program.

Emergency teams respond to a mock car accident.

Elk Valley kids have been learning to make good decisions as part of the party and risk related trauma in youth (PARTY) program.

Elk Valley secondary school kids have been learning from BC Ambulance, nurses, RCMP and Fernie Fire department every Wednesday at the Elk Valley Hospital in Fernie.

“My first introduction to the PARTY program was certainly an eye opener,” said paramedic and PARTY volunteer, Allegra Newill. “It forced the students to look through the eyes of the doctors, nurses, firefighters, and paramedics. It gave the students time to think about future choices they are to make and showed them with such realism the potentially fatal consequences.”

The program included mock emergencies involving car wrecks and patients. Students were also shown x-rays of injuries suffered by people who were involved in real car wrecks and photos of collision scenes.

In the afternoon, a drug and alcohol counsellor and a pastor made presentations to the Grade 10 students.

“Every three hours in our country someone is killed in a car accident,” said Newill. “The majority of these accidents are preventable.”

The goal of the PARTY program is to reduce the incidents of risk related trauma in youths by empowering them to make informed, safe choices, increasing their personal awareness of choices and the impact of serious injury on their quality of life, and promoting injury prevention initiatives, such as wearing a helmet and seatbelt and driving sober.

“With grad quickly approaching, I truly hope the Elk Valley students got something out of this sombre day and choose not to cross the stupid line down the road,” said Newill.