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Guardian Angel Program Will Help Elderly During a Power Outage

The Guardian Angel Program is designed to help those at risk during electrical outages who are reliant on power for their medical devices.

Guardian Angel Program Will Help Elderly During a Power Outage

Source: Melissa Kaye

April 18, 2024 4:10 PM CDT
By: Melissa Kaye

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Wisconsin Rapids, Wis (WFHR, WIRI) – Four different organizations in Wood County are working on the Guardian Angel Program. The idea came from Alderperson Patrick Delaney because of his involvement in the community and situations within his own family. There are many elderly people in our community who live on their own and are reliant on electricity to power their medical devices. In the event of a power outage, they would be at risk. During an emergency event, the Fire and Police Departments are already overwhelmed. Alderperson Delaney said this program will help fill the gap and care for our elderly population during emergency situations.

Alderperson Patrick Delaney

Wisconsin Rapids Fire Department

Alderperson Delaney approached Fire Chief Todd Eckes with his concern for the population in Wood County who are at risk during a power outage, and Chief Eckes is well aware of how busy the WR Fire Department and the WR Police Department can be during an emergency situation. Together, they came up with the volunteer idea for the Guardian Angel Program. They know it would be helpful to get other community programs involved.

Formation of the Idea – Chief Eckes

Wood County Health Department

They reached out to the Wood County Health Department. The department has statistics on the number of people in our community who rely on powered medical devices. Sara Luchini is the Emergency Preparedness Coordinator with the Wood County Health Department. The Guardian Angel Project sounds right up her alley. The statistics show the number of people who may need the assistance is large. What the numbers don’t reveal are if these people are living in nursing homes, other supported living situations, or are living independently and don’t have support. The next step will be collecting information on how many people would need help.

WC Health Summary – Sara Luchini

United Way of South Wood and Adams Counties

Our United Way has a strong volunteer program. The group decided it would be beneficial to bring them in on the project. The United Way will be able to help recruit, do background checks, and manage the volunteers.

The Next Steps

Right now, the program is gathering information on who needs assistance in our community in the case of a power outage. People can register with the Guardian Angel Program through the city website. Once the team has an idea of what is needed, they can start recruiting volunteers to pair with those who are registered. The links are live now to register and also to volunteer.

How to sign up

You can hear the full interview with James Malouf and his guests on April 16, 2024 on Mid-day Magazine.

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