southwest@vaems.org

 

The Southwest Virginia EMS Council has launched a capital campaign to establish a regional training center dedicated to serving our region's EMS agencies and providers.

In September 2010, the Board of Directors voted to enter into a lease agreement with Johnson Commercial Properties for a 5,700-square-foot building located in the City of Bristol, Virginia.  The former National Business College building is an ideal fit for the Council's current and expanding training program, which offers more than 400 hours of educational opportunities each year.  The decision will significantly increase the organization's current facility budget

The Council realizes that this is a bold move, especially in today's environment, but for more than 30 years, the Council has supported the educational needs of our region's heroes and constantly seeks out new ways to meet the growing regional needs.  Each day the Council fields calls from active EMS providers who have not been able to find the courses needed to meet the state recertification requirements, and we understand their dilemma.  EMS providers must have affordable access to EMS education, and this is the driving force behind this decision.  By creating a regional EMS training center, the Council can improve efficiencies and better serve these needs. Some goals of the capital project include:

  • Establishment of a computer lab accessible to EMS providers and agencies to allow them to take advantage of online CE opportunities (and hopefully provide computerized testing at a later date)
  • Serve as an American Heart Association Community Training Site (and ultimately as a Community Training Center)
  • EMS Study Hall/AV Lab to allow providers to watch video lectures to obtain Category 3 CE credit
  • Open facility for use by other public safety agencies for educational programs and public meetings
  • Establish a simulation lab to support EMS provider education
  • Provide space for public CPR, first aid, and community-based educational program
  • Establish Council satellite offices

With required renovation, the Council estimates that total cost will be $400,000. As a part of the lease agreement, a portion of monthly payments will go toward the principal for a future purchase of the building.  The Council has set a goal of raising 60% of the purchase cost.

For information about how you can assist, please contact Executive Director Gregory Woods.

PROGRESS AND NEWS

Community partners are essential to the success of this worthwhile project. The Council has already received multiple grants and donations since announcing our plans, and we appreciate the overwhelming support for this project. For news releases related to contributions and grants, please click on the links below:

RELATED NEWS STORIES

CONTRIBUTIONS

Atmos Energy-$1,000

Alpha Natural Resources-$15,000

Bland County Volunteer Rescue Squad-$10,000