'Save-a-life' parties

Each year, an estimated 350,000 Americans die from sudden cardiac arrest. This killer can strike anyone, at any age, without warning.

Hosting a 'save-a-life' party is a great way to educate friends and family about surviving sudden cardiac arrest through CPR training and AED use.

How to host a CPR training party

Just follow these steps:

1. Organize

  • Set a date, time and location. Make sure room has enough floor space and padding for kneeling during CPR practice.
  • Apply for grants or organize fund raising.
  • Order or plan for supplies, such as CPR Anytime kits ($30 per kit, 1 kit per person recommended) or mannequins and AED trainer.
  • Attend a train the trainer class. It will cover how to use the CPR Anytime kit to host your party, information to share with your guests, and tips on how to spread the word.

2. Plan

  • Create an invitation list and send out email reminders or post cards.
  • Invite a variety of people, who may want to learn and share the information with another group.
  • Consider video needs. CPR Anytime requires a DVD player and audio.

3. Promote

  • Consider sharing information about your party with the local newspaper or community information flyers.
  • Send out reminders to guests.
  • Make it fun. Get literature and activities.

4. Party

  • Explain "how to save a life" and pass out information on sharing CPR Anytime.
  • Consider making your party a potluck or add it to another group meeting.

5. Report

  • Share the number trained with your local agency, or go to Heart Rescue Project and fill out a CPR training report.

6. Repeat

  • Consider having another party.
  • Apply for additional kits through grants, fund raising.
  • Contact Heart Safe Communities for creative ways to reuse your kit.

In the news

The ratio now taught for CPR is 30 chest compressions to two breaths.

The life of this party is a CPR dummy named Annie

"Save-a-life" parties are introducing more people to emergency-response techniques in a more relaxed environment.

The Spring Lake Park-Blaine-Mounds View Fire Department has been a model for the parties, a concept developed through Allina Health Heart Safe Communities.

Health encyclopedia

CPR stands for cardiopulmonary resuscitation, an emergency lifesaving method that is done when a person's own breathing or heartbeat have stopped, such as in cases of sudden cardiac arrest.