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Hilltown Voices: Emergency preparedness training offered

When it comes to emergency preparedness, you are never too old or too young to learn some basic skills and protocols that could save someone’s life.

This is the message Emergency Manager Denise Banister and Jason Connell, assistant emergency manager, hope to convey at a free CPR training class offered Saturday, Sept. 21.

“We are very excited about being able to offer this training and we are hoping for a huge turnout,” Banister said.

Mary Ann Richardson, a nurse who works with the Notchview Ski Patrol is coordinating the training, according to Town Clerk Brenda Lessard.

While the classes will not provide a certification in CPR, they will give basic instruction in CPR and familiarize participants with to how operate an automatic external defibrillator.

The one-hour classes will go from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will take place in the auditorium in the town office building.

The event is being funded by a $2,030 Emergency Management Preparedness Grant.

“I think it is wonderful that the town is able to offer this training, and that they are encouraging young people to attend,” Town Administrator Charlene Nardi said. “Having these skills could really make a difference in someone’s life.”

In conjunction with CPR training, the Williamsburg Police Department along with SafeKids, will be offering free child passenger seat checks across the street from the Town Offices in the Berkshire Bank parking lot.

Both the CPR workshops and the child safety-seat checks are open to everyone including people who do not reside in Williamsburg.

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Presentation on palliative care

Dr. Jeffery Zesiger, medical director of palliative care at Cooley Dickinson Hospital, will be speaking at a luncheon sponsored by the Cummington Council on Aging Tuesday.

“I am very interested to hear what they have to say. I have a 94-year-old aunt in a nursing home, so hopefully I will learn something that could help her,” said COA Director Carolyn Urekew.

Often, palliative care is associated with end-of-life care, as it is used to relieve symptoms, rather than to cure disease. However, palliative care can help any one who is diagnosed with a serious illness, regardless of how long they will be receiving treatment, be it days or decades.

For people who are suffering from chronic diseases, such as COPD, cancer, or cardiovascular disease, early use of palliative care can prevent much unnecessary suffering.

Urekew said that hospital had contacted her to see if the COA would be interested in hosting a presentation.

“Apparently they have done this for other senior centers in the area and it has been very well received,” Urekew said.

Zesiger is board-certified in internal medicine, palliative care and hospice, as well as the medical director of the VNA & Hospice of Cooley Dickinson.

The presentation will take place at the Community House after the noontime potluck lunch. Those attending the lunch are asked to bring a dish or to make a donation in lieu bringing food.

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Roast beef dinner

The Worthington Historical Society will host its 11th annual roast beef dinner Sunday. The society’s biggest fundraiser of the year, the dinner will begin with cocktails at 3 p.m. and dinner served at 4 p.m. at the society, 6 Williamsburg Road (Route 112).

The Lost 45’s (Dave Pollard and band), will provide musical entertainment. There will also be a 50/50 fundraiser. Diners will be able to enjoy a photo exhibit by Alex Feld.

Tickets are $20, available at the Worthington Library, 1 Huntington Road; the Corners Grocery; and at the door — if it’s not sold out. Children under age 12 are free.

Items for this weekly column about Hilltown life can be sent to fryan.gazette@gmail.com

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