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PR- 404-09
September 13, 2009


Partnership of NYC Service and FDNY Increases Number of New Yorkers Trained In Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

Trainees Learned Lifesaving Skills and Pledged to Make Sure Five More Friends or Family Members Learn Basic CPR

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, FDNY Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta and Chief Service Officer Diahann Billings-Burford today announced that NYC Service participants trained nearly 500 New Yorkers in life-saving CPR this weekend as a part of the City’s recognition of the federal designation of September 11th as a National Day of Service and Remembrance.  Each CPR trainee pledged to give back by ensuring five friends or family members learn basic CPR, expanding the program’s reach.  NYC Service and FDNY held the initiative’s first phase on September 12th and 13th at training locations throughout the five boroughs. Emergency preparedness is one of six impact areas targeted through NYC Service. The launch of the program was made possible in part due to generous support from the American Heart Association and the AARP. During the City’s commemoration ceremony on September 11th this year, family members of those who died were paired with volunteers from throughout the five boroughs to read the names of the victims in honor of the new designation of the National Day of Service and Remembrance.

“We introduced NYC Service to do our part to meet President Obama’s call for a new era of service in America,” said Mayor Bloomberg.  “On September 11th, the President renewed his call, asking us to remember how we came together eight years ago and to honor the heroism we saw that day by giving back to our communities through service this year. Over the weekend, nearly 500 New Yorkers answered the call by learning how to make a potentially life-saving difference and by helping spread that skill across the City.”

“Learning CPR is critical because it can provide immediate help to someone in need in those first moments before emergency responders arrive,” said Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta.  “I encourage every New Yorker to take advantage of the free training and ask them to pledge to share the knowledge gained with their loved ones.”

“By working with the FDNY and other key organizations, we will expand the number of City residents that will be able to help a friend, a neighbor or a struggling stranger in need of CPR.  CPR training and sharing the knowledge gained is another excellent way for thousands of New Yorkers to get involved and give back,” said Chief Service Officer Diahann Billings-Burford.  “Each person trained this weekend pledged to share their new knowledge with five others, multiplying the positive impact we will make on our City’s overall emergency preparedness.”

The FDNY utilizes a Mobile CPR Training Program to ensure as many City residents as possible can provide “bystander CPR” if needed. The partnership with NYC Service will enable FDNY to expand the capacity of the program to train more New Yorkers. 

By pledging to ensure five friends or family members will learn basic CPR, each trainee is giving back by helping to spread the potentially life-saving skills they have learned across the City.  The trainees were given a take-home training kit and their friends and family will self-train using the kit. The partnership between FDNY and NYC Service will increase the number of direct CPR training opportunities available this year as well.

CPR training is one of the 40 initiatives of NYC Service – a new, citywide program launched by Mayor Bloomberg in April to meet his State of the City pledge for New York City to lead the nation in answering President Obama’s national call to service. The program has three core goals: channel the power of volunteers to address the impacts of the current economic downturn, make New York City the easiest city in America in which to serve, and ensure every young person in New York City is taught about civic engagement and has an opportunity to serve. NYC Service aims to drive volunteer resources to six impacts areas where New York City’s needs are greatest: strengthening communities, helping neighbors in need, education, health, emergency preparedness and the environment.   

CPR training events are free to the public and those wishing to participate can learn about future training session times and locations and sign-up by visiting or calling 311.

In April, Mayor Bloomberg joined President Obama as he signed the bipartisan Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act which, for the first time, officially recognizes September 11th as a National Day of Service and Remembrance.


Stu Loeser / Marc LaVorgna   (212) 788-2958

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