By Amanda Hatfield Anderson
SATELLITE BEACH -- When Satellite Beach Fire Chief Donald Hughes needed help raising funds to purchase much needed medical equipment, he knew exactly what organization to go to.
Two months ago, Chief Hughes approached the Satellite Beach Woman's Club, as the department was in need of airway medical equipment.
"We had Chief Hughes come to a meeting to explain what he needed," said Dee Anderson of the Satellite Beach Woman's Club. "He said that he wouldn't be greedy and asked for only one airway medical equipment device, but we knew that they needed two for both fire rescues."
Firefighters use the airway medical equipment when people have trouble breathing, which can be necessary on calls for fires and other emergencies.
In order to give the local fire department the tools it needed, the Satellite Beach Woman's Club held a community project to raise the funds.
"We raised money by sending out letters to our community and the different clubs within it," Mrs. Anderson said. "Each device costs $672, so we needed $1.344 to equip both fire rescues."
After reaching out to the local community for help, the Satellite Beach Lion's Club donated enough money to purchase one device. The Satellite Beach Woman's Club received the rest of the monies for the second device through the generosity of other local businesses and residents, including Complete Air and Heat, the 55 Plus Club, Shieva Kumar of Melbourne Discount Pharmacy and the Norma Houston family.
"Raising the money in two short months wouldn't have been possible without the wonderful response we received from our community," Mrs. Anderson added.
On June 19, Chief Hughes presented the organizations and individuals, who donated funds, with the fire department's Community Service Award.
"In two short months, the Woman's Club collected $1,344 to purchase Airway Medical Equipment. The Satellite Beach Woman's Club is the foundation of our city," Paula Brandt said in a press release. "They are always there to guide, support, fundraise and protect our city.
"We are very gracious for the kindness of the organizations involved," Chief Highes added. "This is a prime example of the community lending a hand when one is needed."