Tiny Heartbeats saving lives in Geraldton

9 November 2020

Kylie Parker’s life changed forever when her three-year-old son Jake drowned in their backyard swimming pool in February last year. She’s responded to this tragedy by taking positive actions to help other parents learn the skills they need to keep their children safe around water.

Recently Kylie started a new Facebook group called Tiny Heartbeats First Aid and CPR, with the aim of providing parents around Geraldton with access to basic childhood first aid and CPR training. She has partnered with local Royal Life Saving First Aid Trainer Dionne Adams and together they have arranged and run Heart Beat Club courses for local parents over recent weeks.A group of women with babies at a Heart Beat Club presentation

Kylie says she wanted to do something positive as a response to her own loss. “After Jake drowned I knew I had to do something to stop other parents from going through the grief of losing a child to drowning. I got in touch with a lot of organisations but when COVID-19 hit everything was closing down which worried me. When a friend reached out on a Facebook group to say there was no one in Geraldton offering childhood first aid classes I decided to reach out to Royal Life Saving to see if there was anything they could do to help.”

The community has responded amazingly well to the provision of these courses and Kylie says she’s had a lot of support. “Sophie Purcell from Magic Cottage, a local daycare centre, reached out to donate a few of her day care workers to run a creche for our first event, which was amazing! Everyone in the community has been really supportive in helping us to deliver such an important course. Dionne has been amazing too, she is such an advocate for drowning prevention and is a big inspiration and role model for me.”

Kylie and Dionne are running their next course this Wednesday 11th November from 10am at the CWA Hall in Bluff Point. The course costs $25 with morning tea provided, and is a great opportunity for local parents to catch up, have some fun and learn important skills.

For Kylie the future will see her make a positive difference to more families in the Geraldton community. “My plan is to become a qualified First Aid Trainer myself and be able to deliver this course to as many people as I possibly can. Tiny Heartbeats is a way of keeping my son's memory alive and I know he would be so proud of his mum for doing this in his name. The grief of losing a child to drowning is 100% preventable, and if I can save just one family from going through what my family and I have experienced then that is what I will do.”

Royal Life Saving WA is pleased to see Kylie use her own tragedy to help safeguard other children from drowning. She has recently become a Royal Life Saving Keep Watch Parent Ambassador, sharing her story to educate other parents on the best ways to prevent toddler drowning. We look forward to working with Kylie into the future as together we aim to eliminate toddler drowning in the WA community.

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