Health district, Echo Hose team up for Shelton-based health fair
Residents interested in learning what health care agencies are available in the Valley while brushing up on some CPR training, and maybe even getting a flu shot, need only go to one spot.
Echo Hose Ambulance Corps and the Naugatuck Valley Health District are partnering for the first-ever Health & Safety Fair on Saturday, Oct. 5, at the Echo Hose Training Center — which has, as hoped by ambulance officials, become a hub for health, wellness and safety training over the past year.
The fair — which is to become an annual event — will run from 9 a.m. to noon and feature free training in the use of Narcan and hands-only CPR; blood pressure screenings; “Stop the Bleed” instruction; and even a “Hidden in Plain Sight” program.
NVHD staff will be offering flu shots, most of which will be free depending on the insurance company. Children must be accompanied by a parent.
The event will also feature 30 different exhibitors as well as activities including arts and crafts; raffle prizes; Touch a Truck; and Meet the Fire Department.
“The health fair will have different health care organizations, different public safety and first responders from throughout the Valley,” said Joe Laucella, Echo Hose Ambulance assistant chief. “The big focus of the health district is kicking off the flu season with prevention information and providing flu shots.”
Laucella and Carissa Caserta, NVHD’s assistant director of community health services, agree that this fair will provide residents the chance to learn about the various health care and public safety services available throughout the Valley.
Laucella said that there will be free classes, including training on the use of Narcan, CPR and bleeding control. There will also be a “Hidden in Plain Site” mock bedroom set up, so people, specifically parents, can learn to recognize lethal substances, vaping devices and drug paraphernalia that can sit in common space right in plain view.
Local fire departments will be on hand providing demonstrations.
“This education center is really here to support the community with these types of events,” said Laucella, “and we appreciate the support of the entire community, specifically the Valley Community Foundation, which recently provided us a $9,700 grant.”
Since the training center opened a year ago, Laucella said that 30 different non-profits and public safety agencies have utilized the facility for various programs — everything from meetings for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life to Shelton Historical Society programs, BHCares offering mental health first aid and Narcan training to the Valley Parish Nurses holding car seat clinics. The center has also hosted dozens of FEMA and Department of Homeland Security free training for first responders and public safety agencies.
“This health fair is a chance for people to learn about the resources that are right here in local community that they can come and access, a lot of times for free,” said Laucella. “This fair also highlights the importance of coming and getting vaccinated for the flu and flu prevention.”
For those interested in registering for a free class at the health fair, visit https://www.regonline.com/registration/Checkin.aspx?EventID=2571383