Providing Children Independence to Excel
Project Lifesaver bridges the technological gap for at risk populations and public safety agencies by providing police, fire/rescue and other first responders with a comprehensive program including equipment and training to quickly locate and rescue at risk individuals with cognitive disorders who are at constant risk to the life threatening behavior of wandering, including those with Alzheimer’s disease, Autism, and Down syndrome.
With the partnership of local law enforcement and first responders, we currently serves 22 children and adults who have these types of developmental disabilities that put them at increased risk for wandering.”
Project Lifesaver consists of a bracelet, worn by the child or adult either on their wrist or their ankle. The units are secure and can only be removed by cutting the strap. There are two receivers in the county, at the Taney County Sherriff’s Department and the Taney County Fire Department, which are activated when a report is placed that a person is missing. The first responders can “ping” the bracelet to help in quickly locating the missing person.
Currently, we have a waiting list of 8 families who are in need of the Project Lifesaver bracelets. These families consider this a lifeline for their loved one should their child or family member wander (and in many case, run) off. Each bracelet is $360, which is unaffordable for many families caring for a person with one or multiple developmental disabilities. Dignity Now seeks funding to serve the 8 families currently on the wait list and to have 2 spare units to replace the aging units currently in use.
While the primary mission of Project Lifesaver is to provide timely response to save lives and reduce potential injury for adults and children who wander due to Autism, Down’s syndrome and other related conditions or disorders, the ancillary benefit for our community is that without effective procedures and equipment, searches can involve multiple agencies, hundreds of officers, countless man hours and thousands of dollars. Utilizing the technology and partnerships already in place, Dignity Now feels it is a direct benefit of Project Lifesaver for potential taxpayer savings.