Have you ever truly wondered what to do when disaster strikes? What if there is a flood and you save someone from drowning but they cannot breath? Or it’s an average day and someone dear to you is choking? Well saving 9 understands your worries and is working to help the people be educated on what to do in times of crisis.
It all started back in 2008 whenthe earthquake of 2008 devastated the country and countless many lives were lost, as people waited for emergency relief. Students at Lahore university of Management Sciences (LUMS) observed the lack of knowledge among the general population on what to do in times of crisis and decided to take action. As such a group of highly motivated students started the LUMS Emergency Medical Services (EMS), change starts from within. The first batch of students took basic first aid training from ‘Rescue 1122’ and went onto pass on the knowledge to the future batches.
Since then two enthusiastic individuals Ovais Siddiqui and Usama Javed, graduated and set up Saving 9 in December of 2016. The name comes from the saying ‘a stitch in time saves 9’. The story is on how solving the matter now can save one from future disasters. With the belief of ‘prevention is better than a cure’ and their experience in the LUMS EMS department,from their undergraduate years, they started their journey as Saving 9. Theyrealized that there is an immediate need for this knowledge to be encompassed in the rural areas, where relief is hours away and little adequate access to healthcare and medical resources are available.
Over the last two years, they have grown into 4 cities and growing, have trained more than 300 citizens in first aid and have started ambulance system pilot in PindBegwal and other regions,benefitting more than 18,500 people across Pakistan.
By visiting schools and educating the children they inculcate the belief of helping others. These children will one day grow and touch more lives in various ways, from helping others and saving lives to training them on basics of first aid. This belief has led their team to grow with a singular aim of making Pakistan and the World a better and safer place.
Their training includes not only theoretical knowledge but also practical demonstrations that allow people to experience the pain of being in the crisis to the activities required to save those from suffering. Just like their motto they train children with the belief that even if you don’t have a degree for it you can save a life. Their work can be divided into two categories; workplace training and community development. Community development includes spreading and implementing of the knowledge in a way that benefits the entire community and brings out a sense of togetherness, unity and responsibility.Brochures highlighting the scarcity of emergency response systems and health care facilities along with course details can be found on their website as guidance.
Role of Saving 9
Initiatives like these are needed to build stronger communities and help prevent future disasters. Even with the best of our intention without the proper knowledge we can end up causing more harm to a patient than relief. As such, programs of Saving 9 are essential for our nation, for an educated nation will lead to a prosperous Pakistan. Such organizations need our support so that we can grow on our own without relying on external help.