Elkhart Montessori School wins grant for AED

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ELKHART, Ind. (WNDU) - Automatic external defibrillators, or AEDs, are becoming a common sight in local businesses and public spaces. In emergency cardiac situations, the medical devices can deliver a lifesaving shock to the patient’s heart.

Thanks to Martin's Super Markets' One School at a Time grant, soon there will be an AED at Cornerstone Christian Montessori School in Elkhart. Cornerstone is the recipient of the September $1,000 grant.

The school obtained a training unit that they introduced to the children.

"You saw them playing with the machine, that's what we do," said Kerry Lawson, the head of the school. "They pick it up, they touch it, they're not afraid of it. And that's what we want them to be. We want them to be hands-on citizens."

Lawson says an AED has been on their wish list for some time, and now, with the Martin’s grant, they'll be able to purchase one for the school.

"Everybody was so excited and yelling and happy," Lawson said. "That was No. 1 on our list."

There are 86 children enrolled at Cornerstone Christian Montessori ages 6 weeks old to sixth grade. They say all the staff, teachers and kids will be educated on how to use the lifesaving device.

"We want to make sure we're prepared not just for our students and our staff but for anyone who may enter our building," Lawson said.

The children will know it's a tool, not a toy.

"We only use it in case of emergencies," Lawson said. "If there's an adult, then the adult will handle it first."

"The AED is very good. It’s very user-friendly," Cornerstone teacher Aubrey Eastway said. "It walks you right through everything. It prompts you how to use the machine, when to use the machine and if you need to use the machine."

Since there are so many infants and toddlers enrolled at the school, they will order special pad sizes for the little ones.

If you would like to enter your school for a $1,000 One School at a Time grant, click here.