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Marine Staff Sgt. Pablo Mendoza, left, a volunteer instructor for the American Red Cross, demonstrates how to sweep clean a victim’s mouth during cardiopulmonary resuscitation training for staff members Friday at Kinser Elementary School on Camp Kinser, Okinawa.

Marine Staff Sgt. Pablo Mendoza, left, a volunteer instructor for the American Red Cross, demonstrates how to sweep clean a victim’s mouth during cardiopulmonary resuscitation training for staff members Friday at Kinser Elementary School on Camp Kinser, Okinawa. (Fred Zimmerman / S&S)

Marine Staff Sgt. Pablo Mendoza, left, a volunteer instructor for the American Red Cross, demonstrates how to sweep clean a victim’s mouth during cardiopulmonary resuscitation training for staff members Friday at Kinser Elementary School on Camp Kinser, Okinawa.

Marine Staff Sgt. Pablo Mendoza, left, a volunteer instructor for the American Red Cross, demonstrates how to sweep clean a victim’s mouth during cardiopulmonary resuscitation training for staff members Friday at Kinser Elementary School on Camp Kinser, Okinawa. (Fred Zimmerman / S&S)

Marine Staff Sgt. Pablo Mendoza, right, demonstrates how to properly perform cardio-pulomnary resuscitation on a training aid for staff members at Kinser Elementary School on Camp Kinser Friday.

Marine Staff Sgt. Pablo Mendoza, right, demonstrates how to properly perform cardio-pulomnary resuscitation on a training aid for staff members at Kinser Elementary School on Camp Kinser Friday. (Fred Zimmerman / S&S)

CAMP KINSER, Okinawa — While Friday was a day off from school for Department of Defense Dependents Schools students, staff members weren’t as lucky: They had an in-service day.

For a handful of paraprofessionals at Kinser Elementary School on Camp Kinser, the day was spent catching up on some requirements and certifications. Eight staff members brushed up their cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and first-aid skills during training from certified Red Cross instructor Pablo Mendoza.

Mendoza, an active-duty Marine staff sergeant, was given special liberty by his section, the Electrical Maintenance Company on Camp Kinser, to refresh the staff members’ life-saving skills.

One of the first things he taught was the three “Cs” when responding to an emergency: check, call and care. He said when responding to a situation, always check first to make sure it’s safe, to avoid putting yourself or the victim in more danger. The “call” portion of responding is simply calling 911 or activating an emergency plan if the facility has one.

The last “c” stands for the care given to the victim. Mendoza said that no matter how many problems the person is facing, “make sure you treat the most serious problem first.”

The first half of the day was focused on CPR and “rescue breathing.” Mendoza gave short lectures on the proper procedures, followed by Red Cross videos to demonstrate techniques. Staff members then demonstrated the techniques on training aids while Mendoza quizzed them verbally. They were given instruction on providing CPR to adults, children and infants, Mendoza said.

The remainder of the training focused on first aid. He covered everything from bandaging cuts to treating more severe injuries such as burns and fractures.

Brandy Sheppard, a case study committee technician at the school, said the training is important so “I’ll know what to do in an emergency. It’s important because we work around kids.”

The school paraprofessionals must hold Red Cross certification on the topics covered Friday, Sheppard said. Certification isn’t mandated for teachers, she said, but the schools recommend they be trained.

The first-aid training is good for three years and CPR training is an annual requirement, Mendoza said.

Keeping the staff members trained is important, said Mendoza, who has children in the school and has been volunteering to teach Red Cross classes since 2003.

“It helps them better help us,” he said. “And it lets us know that our kids are being watched by someone who is certified.”


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