J.H.A.A.N.D. offering a helping hand
By Jacqueline Sheppard
On Dec. 13, 2014 the Jalon’s Helping Advocate Awareness For Near Drowning (JHAAND) foundation had a community event and toy drive for Christmas. The purpose of the event was to bring awareness to near drowning victims and to provide Christmas toys to needy children of the area.
Jalon Palmer, at the age of 20 months, fell into the family pool and was brain dead for 40 minutes. Jalon is 14 years old and requires great medical care, he has medical personnel on hand 24 hours a day. Although he has great disabilities, Jalon is full of life and love.
The event was organized by Jalon’s mother Sherry Palmer, the founder of JHAAND along with Jacqueline Sheppard and Bernette McClover of the Greater Faith Church of Christ Holiness Unto the Lord Church, where the event was held.
JHAAND’S ultimate goal is to save a child’s life through awareness and prevention of safety hazards to children.
“We would like to provide swimming lessons and CPR classes as well as other safety measures to children as we spread abroad to different communities and look forward to doing more events like this throughout the year. It takes a village to raise a child, children safety should be our first priority,” stated Palmer.
Ken Roland with Every Child A Swimmer, Inc., was on hand to demonstrate proper CPR procedures and demonstrated with the children what could happen in a near drowning experience.
Shakia Mathews, a parent, was glad she and her daughters attended. “That was a great thing JHAAND did with the CPR presentation. I really enjoyed the event. The children received a gift of a lifetime. My daughters and I both participated in the CPR demonstration. I learned CPR today. Can’t wait until the next event, I plan on being there.”
The kids really took notice and participated in the CPR presentation, as well as their parents.
A five-year-old boy performing the CPR techniques. When asked what he learned, he said, “I learned “about five”. You have to do 30 pushes on the chest two breathes “five times”.
Roland, who is an advocate for teaching and educating the community on water safety and instructing the proper skills for such said, “This is what it’s all about. It’s great to see the young people so eager to learn important life saving skills and seeing them pick it up so fast is moving.”
One mother of a six-year-old boy excitedly exclaimed, “My son came home and told me and his father he learned CPR. He kept saying it over and over. I’m so glad because you never know, he may have to use it one day to help save on our lives.”
The Community event was operated strictly off of donations by local businesses and big hearts. Their contributions helped to make it all happen.
The JHAAND team would like to give thanks to Mr. Dwayne Wade Sr. who took time to speak and encourage the youth, even taking time to give pointers with the kids while shooting hoops with them. Many thanks to Fort Lauderdale City Commissioner Robert McKinzie, Retired NFL players Roy Foster and James Pruitt and to all the local businesses that contributed and showed their concern for helping to keep our children safe.
“We came for the toys, but the CPR presentation was the best. Everything was good! The food, activities, resources on water safety and drowning prevention was great, but the CPR show was the best of all. Thanks so much. We would love to volunteer for any events you all have in the future. Keep up the good work.”— Local home-owners in the community
JHAAND is geared towards assisting families worldwide by offering a helping hand, and guiding them into the right direction.
“My five year old grand-daughter came home excited, she put her baby doll on the floor and showed me how to do CPR. She didn’t say anything much about the toys. The only thing she kept talking about was she learned CPR… Awesome!!!”—Gail Bellinger
Let’s all come together and make it happen for our children in our village. May God continue to bless and we move forward in unity. If you would like to make a donation to the cause please visit the JHAAND website and also like us on Facebook, we can be reached at (954) 654-8351.