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Project Lifesaver

  • Project Lifesaver

    Project Lifesaver

    Families in Wright County now have access to technology to save the lives of those with special needs who may wander away, thanks to the fundraising efforts of Buffalo Hospital Foundation.

    Project Lifesaver uses state-of-the-art technology and specially trained teams to rapidly locate lost children and adults with autism, Alzheimer's disease and related disorders.

    How Project Lifesaver works

    Clients enrolled in Project Lifesaver wear a wristband which emits a tracking signal. The signal can be picked up as far as one mile on the ground and 10 miles by air.

    If a person wearing a bracelet ever is lost, their caregiver calls 911 and a Project Lifesaver search and rescue team responds with a mobile tracking system. Recovery times average less than 30 minutes.

    Sergeant Brian Johnson of the Wright County Sheriff's Office says it's a good tool to help searchers. "Time is of the essence when you are searching for any missing person, but even more so if they have special needs. Project Lifesaver gives us an advantage because it allows us to narrow large search areas."

    Project Lifesaver training also included education on how to interact best with people with conditions like autism and Alzheimer's disease.

    Locating the individual is only part of the mission. The person may be disoriented, anxious and untrusting. Search teams know how to approach the person, gain their trust and put them at ease for the trip home.

    Bringing Project Lifesaver to Wright County

    Buffalo Hospital initiated the push to bring Project Lifesaver to Wright County. With emergency agencies on board, the Foundation dedicated the annual fall fishing tournament to raising money for Project Lifesaver. A tele-fundraising campaign followed. Then several community organizations jumped in, including Wright Hennepin Electric's Operation Round Up, the Elim Care Foundation, the Community Health Foundation of Wright County and the Buffalo Fire Department.

    Sign up

    Families can sign up for Project Lifesaver by calling Wright County Human Services at 763-682-7875 for an application. The service is $300 (includes leased bracelet, batteries, wristbands and other necessary supplies)for the first year, then $105 each year thereafter. Batteries are changed monthly to ensure the bracelet always works. Scholarship funds from Buffalo Hospital Foundation are available for those who qualify for assistance.