iTech students offered tips on hands only CPR at this years Big Bus Event. (Photo by Travis Anderson)
Coordinated by the Collier County Health Department, Immokalee’s 3rd Annual Big Bus Event brought together over 50 organizations and attracted a large number of local residents. With good health in mind, organizations came together to offer a variety of free services to Immokalee area residents. For some, a simple flu shot was all they were interested in. But for many others, the Big Bus Event created a day of fun for the whole family. While Walgreens offered free flu shots, iTECH students in the LPN and CNA program offered quick tips for Hands-Only CPR. James Leavor, a Nursing Instructor with iTECH pointed out that since there’s been a push to move away from the traditional form of CPR to an easier process for bystanders, it was important to have his students at the event to help residents learn the basic elements of doing chest compressions. Representatives from the Collier County Sheriff’s Office were also on hand to provide information about crime prevention techniques and to show parents what clues to look for if they suspect that their teenagers are using drugs. Cpl. Freiburger said that the Sheriff’s Office’s mock teen room contains real-world items such as over-the-counter medicine commonly used by teenagers to get high as well as containers that might be used by teenagers to conceal illegal drugs. In addition, members of the Sheriff’s Office cooked hotdogs for the crowd and manned a rock-wall that several of the local kids enjoyed. Firefighters with the Immokalee Fire Control District welcomed local residents by showing off one of their newest trucks to the fleet, Tower Ladder 32. Before leaving for the day, residents also had the opportunity to take with them a sizeable amount of healthy food items. Mike Davis with the Harry Chapin Food Bank said that they brought with them approximately 7,000 pounds of food which included bread, bagels, fruits, vegetables, and meat. Although the event started at around 10 a.m., by 12:30 p.m. it was estimated that 6,000 pounds of food had been given away. Overall the event was a great success. Community organizations throughout southwest Florida came together and the effort was well received by many.