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Source: San Diego Fire Foundation

October 27, 2016 (San Diego) - During this year’s Fire Prevention Week, the San Diego Regional Fire Foundation presented grant checks to a dozen local fire agencies at open house events around the county.

“These grants enable fire departments to obtain needed fire and medical/rescue equipment and to provide training to ensure our firefighters can deliver the highest level of service to all San Diego County communities,” said Fire Foundation Chairman Frank Ault.  “Each year, we receive specific requests from agencies targeted for their individual needs.”

At a recent open house held in Alpine, visitors heard the riveting story of a heart attack victim who is alive today thanks to the intervention of Good Samaritans and well-trained firefighters who had the right equipment at the right time. 

Germar Bernhard explained that he had been clinically dead, until two citizens saw him in distress and administered CPR until firefighter/paramedics arrived.

Alpine Fire Chief Bill Paskle told the audience, “Our firefighters saved Mr. Bernhard’s life using an AutoPulse, a piece of equipment we purchased two years ago with a grant from the San Diego Regional Fire Foundation.”

AutoPulse is an automated, portable, battery-powered cardiopulmonary resuscitation device designed to take over from manual CPR while a patient is transported to the hospital.       

“Mr. Bernhard’s story is positive testimony of how the Fire Foundation benefits our community,” said Ault. “We accomplish our mission by funding equipment and training for firefighters at individual stations, and by providing equipment on a county-wide basis, such as automatic vehicle locators (AVL), automatic electronic defibrillators (AEDs) and mass casualty kits, primarily for rural fire departments.”

Currently, the Foundation is raising $200,000 to rebuild the driveway for the Borrego Springs Fire Protection District’s station, which will help to improve response time and to reduce maintenance costs for their fire engines and ambulances.

This year’s grants for San Diego County communities include:

  • Alpine: cardiac monitor defibrillator
  • Julian/Cuyamaca: cardiac monitor defibrillator
  • Lakeside: Cedar Fire monument
  • Mount Laguna: cold weather firefighter clothing
  • Palomar Mountain: cold weather firefighter clothing
  • Pine Valley: thermal imaging camera
  • Rainbow: firefighter personal protective clothing
  • Ramona:  Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program support
  • Rancho Santa Fe: personal protective clothing for Elfin Forest volunteers
  • CAL FIRE: mass casualty kits for rural fire departments
  • San Diego County Fire Authority: AEDs and radio systems upgrades
  • San Diego County Office of Emergency Services: portable generators

Contributions from San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E), the San Diego Foundation, Grossmont Healthcare District, Southern California Edison, Supreme Master Ching Hai, Wawanesa Insurance and many individuals, including Fire Foundation board members, provided funding for this year’s $280,000 in grants.

The San Diego Regional Fire Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit, was formed in 1989 with a mission to improve the system of fire and emergency services in San Diego County by providing financial support for first-responder equipment and training, by increasing public awareness, and by facilitating cooperation between cities, fire departments, county agencies, corporations, and other foundations.

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Cedar Fire Monument for Lakeside?

What an impressive list of grant's for much needed equipment and programs; with the exception of the Lakeside grant: Cedar Fire Monument. Really? Was this an offset for the tax dollars ($80,000) gifted by the district to this non-profit? Have they recovered all the tax dollars they "loaned" the project? The "Go Fund Me" has only raised $835 toward a $40,000 goal in 19 months.