Article by Julia Lucio – Submitted photos
Every year, Ribfest hires the services of St.John Ambulance. It is one of the city requirements when holding such a big event. As part of the Seaway Lions Club, I recently donated money to St. John Ambulance. “But why,” I thought. “Aren’t they funded by the governemnt?” Since I had little to no knowledge of what exactly St.John Ambulance does in our community, I sat down with Cynthia Bennett, Branch Manager, to find out more.
Here are my 5 questions with St.John Ambulance
1. How did St.John Ambulance come about?
St. John Ambulance Canada is part of one of the world’s oldest humanitarian organizations – the Order of St. John, a worldwide, non-denominational charitable association dedicated to the service of others for more than 900 years. Established in Canada in 1882, St. John Ambulance Canada today has more than 100 branches serving over 300 communities and 25000 volunteers across the country. The Cornwall Branch has been serving the Cornwall and S,D & G area for more than 75 years. In 2015, we had over 50 volunteers within our Therapy Dog, Medical First Responder Division and Board of Directors that donated over 12,000 hours.
2. What services do you offer?
First Aid and CPR training, with our Home Alone, Babysitting and Pet First Aid courses is the commercial side of our organization that helps us to fund our charitable operation. Since 1940, our Medical First Responders have volunteered at community events throughout the S.D.&G. area. Since most venues must provide first aid coverage for their patrons, many organizers depend on St. John Ambulance in order to hold their sporting and cultural events. Our volunteers, in both the Medical First Responder and Therapy Dog divisions, support educational programs for local student groups, Cubs, Brownies and lend a helping hand at events hosted by other charities, as well as provide assistance to the Cornwall Emergency Management Team in times of crisis.
3. How do you get your funding?
We are not government funded, therefore, we r
ely solely on our first aid training, fundraising and donations from the community in order to support us.
4. Who is behind our local chapter here in Cornwall?
St. John Council for Ontario in Toronto has many branches and community services units throughout Ontario carrying our charitable work such as providing medical first response at public events, youth programs, campus response, therapy dog services and child car seat installation clinics. Our mission is to enable Canadian to improve their health, safety and quality of life by providing first aid training program and community services. St. John Ambulance delivers quality community service and training through its 30 branches, 800 certified instructors and over 5,000 volunteers in Ontario.
5. What can WE do to help you?
Continue to support St. John Ambulance Cornwall by taking all first
aid and training courses at our local branch at 1001 Sydney Street Unit 2, and help support our community services through providing monetary donations to our local branch (tax receipts are provided).