One day, friends of an emergency nurse's daughter asked if they could come to Sunnybrook Health Science Centre in Toronto to see where people were brought when they were injured. The nurse approached the hospital administration and they encouraged her to research and develop a pilot program for teens that included an educational approach to injury and trauma. As a result, the Prevent Alcohol and Risk Related Trauma in Youth (P.A.R.T.Y.) program was formed at Sunnybrook in Toronto.
Currently, there are over 100 licensed programs in Canada, the United States, Australia, Germany, Brazil and Japan. Doctors, nurses and other medical staff, law enforcement personnel, paramedics, teachers and injury survivors around the world are all working together to educate youth about risky behaviors and their possible life altering consequences.
P.A.R.T.Y. PROGRAM IN PRINCE GEORGE
In the 1990's, physicians and nurses at the University Hospital of Northern BC were concerned about the increasing number of young people coming in with traumatic injuries. In response, the Prince George P.A.R.T.Y. Program began in 1997. In 2002, the Prince George Safe Attitudes & Actions Society was formed with a single mission: to promote injury prevention among youth through reality education which increases awareness of risks and their possible impacts and emphasizes personal responsibility in making safer choices.
THE VENUE: University Hospital of Northern BC.
THE TIME: every Thursday throughout the school year from 9:00 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.
THE PARTICIPANTS: 40 grade 10 students from high schools in Prince George and the surrounding areas.
- a presentation from an RCMP member
- a presentation from an Emergency Room physician
- tours of ICU, Emergency, the Chapel and the Morgue at UHNBC with presentations in each place
- a hands-on experience at lunch, with students assigned pretend disabilities to deal with while eating
- a simulation of the effects of impairment where students are given an opportunity to practice simple tasks while wearing "drunk" goggles
- sharing of stories from people who have suffered traumatic injuries, describing living with life-changing consequences
THE PROGRAM GUIDES PARTICIPANTS TO:
(1) reconsider behaviors which are too risky to be safe:
- driving under the influence of alcohol
- using cell phones or texting while driving
- operating any vehicle while suffering fatigue
- not wearing a helmet or seat belt
- using drugs
(2) think carefully about the choices they make to ensure their own safety and the safety of others