Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Parent to Parent: The Oscar Project
Anyone who takes care of small children knows how quickly accidents can happen. The questions for parents, could you make the right decision during an emergency? In tonight's Parent to Parent, Seven's Lynn Martinez tells us about a program that helps prepare caregivers.
WSVN -- It's another day on the job for Elsa Rios. This nanny has her hands full with 5-year-old Max and 3-year-old Savanah.
Elsa watches the kids like a hawk to keep them safe, but if there's an emergency she'll know what to do.
Jean Paul: "The main reason we're taking this class is for the kids."
Elsa took a class with the Oscar Project. It's a seven-hour course designed to give nannies, caregivers and families with small children training in general safety, CPR and first aid.
The program was developed by Susan Linning after her 2-year-old neighbor Oscar died in a swimming pool accident.
Susan Linning: "It was the kind of tragedy that made you, me as a parent say, 'How can this happen?' This can't happen without something good coming from it."
Susan put the program together in partnership with the Miami Children's Hospital. Around 300 students have graduated since classes began almost a year ago.
Yanet Avila: "We live in South Florida, there's so many waterways, there's pools. You never know. The accident, it's around the corner, and you have to be prepared."
Some classes are taught in English, but since so many nannies here are from Latin American countries, the majority are in Spanish.
Before they took the class, many of the nannies didn't know CPR or even understood our emergency system.
Susan: "They don't have a 911 system and two, the authorities in some of these countries aren't necessarily going to do the right thing if they come to a house in that type situation."
Instructor Jean Paul Dubois says the class provides caregivers with vital information, but it also gives them confidence.
Jean Paul: "Just the fact that they know that we're there to help them better themselves, they feel like they're actually an important person. They know something else, and they feel better about themselves."
For Elsa, it's all about the kids' safety.
Elsa Rios: "It's important for the children."
Lynn Martinez: "So far, none of these parents or nannies have ever had an emergency with their kids, but thanks to the Oscar Project, they say they are prepared."
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Dr. Valerie Goode
The Oscar Project