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Tag: Vision Credit Union

Auto-Pulse unit, which automates chest compressions, demonstrated on a manequin torso.

Beaver Mines first responders now equipped with AutoPulse unit

It’s known as AutoPulse — an automated, portable, battery-powered device that can help first responders in lifesaving efforts.

Like a person performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation, the unit, when connected to the patient, provides chest compressions and, if needed, administers electric shocks, just like a defibrillator might, but saving valuable time in the process.

With a price tag of nearly $17,000, the cost can be out of reach for many fire departments and ambulance operations in small communities, particularly if they cover a large area, and when more than one might be needed.

Thankfully, though, through a recent donation by one local business, Pincher Creek Emergency Services has been able to acquire a second such unit, strategically placing it at its Beaver Mines fire hall operation.

“With the growing number of users in the backcountry and with the population aging, it’s just one more tool we can use to get the people the help they need,” said PCES fire Chief Pat Neumann.

“We’ve done the research and we know it makes a difference and increases the chances of positive patient outcomes, and for us, with the help of our donors, it’s a wise investment.”



The first unit, already being used in Pincher Creek, has yielded at least two positive outcomes in its time.

“This is an important piece of equipment for our local responders,” said Wendy Desjarlais, Vision Credit Union’s Pincher Creek branch manager, after seeing a demonstration of the AutoPulse in action.

“Especially, where the population at Castle Mountain can explode over the winter, as they said here, to 2,500. There’s so much risk of injury. The fact that this location [Beaver Mines] can respond so much faster and stabilize people so much faster is crucial. You never know. It could help someone you or I know and love.”

Earlier this year, Vision Credit Union presented a cheque for $10,000 to PCES toward the purchase of the unit, a key piece of equipment Division 3 Coun. Dave Cox is glad to see in the fire hall’s arsenal.

“This [unit] will really enhance the capability of our fire-ambulance rescue service in our community. To have this tool in our remote station will really be a benefit,” said Cox, a former fire chief for the region, but also someone who got his start at the Beaver Mines hall.

“The key is timely intervention and anything that comes out of Pincher Creek is 10, maybe 15 minutes out, depending on how fast they can drive, and that’s really the survival window for someone who’s in cardiac arrest.”

And, response time from Pincher can be doubled or tripled, with poor road conditions, if the call is out at Castle Mountain.

While the hope is the unit is never needed, there’s every indication that it will be, and with that in mind, Chief Neumann, knowing its value, is already focusing on adding at least two more units to the fleet — one for the Lundbreck hall, the other for Pincher Creek.


Ace of spades card on ad for Chase the Ace at the Pincher Creek Legion



Group of Vision Credit Union employees in blue t-shirts presents a giant cheque to three women from the Pincher Creek Food Bank.

Vision Credit Union presents grants in Pincher Creek

The Beaver Mines Fire Brigade, Pincher Creek and District Food Centre, and the Southwest Alberta Regional Search and Rescue Society are the beneficiaries. 

The grants will support these groups in undertaking various capital projects.

Beaver Mines Fire Brigade will use the money to purchase a Zoll AutoPulse device, which provides automated CPR to victims of cardiac arrest.

The AutoPulse will be available at the Beaver Mines fire station for both fire and EMS personnel in the event a call comes in where the administration of CPR is required.

Pincher Creek and District Community Food Centre submitted a grant request to help replace the furnace and install an air conditioning system in its food storage and workspace.

The current heating system is outdated, costing the centre a great deal in utility fees, while a lack of air conditioning makes the space unbearable for staff and volunteers during the summer months.


Table setting of wedding venue — the Cowley Lions Campground Stockade near Pincher Creek in southwestern Alberta.


The additions will go a long way in keeping things running smoothly at the food centre.

Lastly, the Southwest Alberta Regional Search and Rescue Society will put its grant money toward acquiring 20 new radios for use during training and rescue.

The radios are part of SARSAR’s plan to overhaul its communications system as the group looks to continue a resurgence following difficulties faced during Covid-19.

Vision Credit Union’s Helping Hands Grants program is intended to help financially support qualified organizations with capital projects designed to benefit communities and the people that call them home.

Through the program, Vision commits $180,000 annually to organizations within its 23 branch communities.

“We were pleased by the interest in this program and impressed by the amazing work being done to further quality of life in our rural Alberta communities,” Steve Friend, CEO of Vision Credit Union, said in a press release.

“We’re honoured to play a part in supporting these efforts.”

Grant applications were evaluated by a grant committee made up of the credit union’s CEO and board, based on each project’s foreseen benefits to its community.

Male youth pins poppy to Remembrance Day cross held by female youth, while another male youth stands at attention, on the front page of Shootin' the Breeze. Alberta news from Pincher Creek area and Crowsnest Pass.

Nov. 9, 2022

We will remember them

Peter Van Bussel and Abigail Rigaux receive a poppy from Walker Anderson at the MHHS Remembrance Day assembly in Pincher Creek.

Kids trick or treating in lion costumes – one roaring and one smiling on the front page of Shootin' the Breeze. Alberta news from Pincher Creek area and Crowsnest Pass.

Nov. 2, 2022

Lion’s share of fun

Ames and Miles were spotted enjoying Spooky Town and the great weather Saturday at Kootenai Brown Pioneer Village in Pincher Creek.