Project Lifesaver Lists Top Rescue and Milestones of 2010

Project Lifesaver International, a non-profit organization that provides public safety agencies with equipment and training to quickly locate and rescue those with cognitive disorders who wander, released its Top Milestones and Rescues of 2010.

According to experts, nearly 60 percent of those with Alzheimer's disease will wander at some point from the safety of their homes. Many of them will wander over and over again. In a recent National Autism Association survey, almost 92 percent of parents felt their autistic child was at risk of wandering from their care. Project Lifesaver International was formed in 1999 to address this growing problem.

Public safety agencies participating in the program undergo extensive training and obtain radio frequency technology to locate those who go missing quickly and safely. Individuals enrolled in each community are provided with a radio transmitter, and should they become lost, agencies use this technology to hone in on a signal and identify the person's exact location. To date, Project Lifesaver agencies have successfully located nearly 2,300 missing people, with no serious injuries or fatalities ever reported.

Top Rescue of 2010
On Nov. 7, 2010, an 18-year-old boy with Down syndrome wandered from his home in Tuscaloosa, Ala. This area is highly populated with a large river flowing two miles from where the boy was last seen. Project Lifesaver units quickly took action after the boy was reported missing, and a helicopter unit was dispatched. Officers received weak signals intermittently from the radio frequency tracking equipment, and following the hits, ground units were dispatched to different places where the signals were heard. The boy was found a short time later, entangled in roots and vines about halfway down a 40-foot high riverbank cliff. Officers climbed up the riverbank to rescue the boy, who was then driven to the hospital for observation and released the following day in good condition.

Top Milestones of 2010
U.S. Department of Justice – Office of Justice Programs – Bureau of Justice Assistance - Project Lifesaver was awarded the 2010/2011 continuation of the Missing Alzheimer's Disease Replication Initiative, which effectively supports new agencies joining Project Lifesaver, and provides free tracking bracelets to families in need. This past year, the grant helped fund 100 new Project Lifesaver agencies and over 1,500 bracelets.

2010 Caregiver Friendly Award – Project Lifesaver received top recognition from Today's Caregiver magazine and Caregiver.com.

Grand Opening of New Office in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Project Lifesaver's new office houses the new Directorate/Development division and will be responsible for promoting the program internationally, as well as increasing awareness of Project Lifesaver in the state of Florida.

Creation of 'Lifesaver Angels' program. This program enables an individual, business, or corporation to "adopt" a participant, agency, or even a country who wants to participate in Project Lifesaver, but who cannot, under normal circumstances, afford the program on their own.

Xanboo Joins Forces with Project Lifesaver. Xanboo, a wireless, equipment company that supplies a wide variety of intrusion and security products, including indoor and outdoor cameras, control of lighting, door/window censors, and other security products, joined forces with Project Lifesaver. Together, Project Lifesaver and Xanboo offer the most comprehensive, total security solution available to families and medical facilities nationwide dedicated to helping locate those with cognitive conditions who wander.

Currently, more than 1,200 fire departments, police departments, sheriff's offices, and EMS providers are members of Project Lifesaver International.

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