The American Heart Association And Cities Of Service Announce Hands-Only™ CPR Training Kit Grant Winners For Year Two

January 21, 2014

Five cities will receive 500 CPR anytime kits to implement the Cities of Service Volunteer CPR Blueprint to improve cardiac arrest survival rates.

DALLAS – For the second year, the American Heart Association and Cities of Service , a bi-partisan coalition of more than 180 mayors committed to using citizen service to address pressing local needs, have selected five cities across the country to receive CPR Anytime Kits (or Hands-Only™ CPR training kits). Each city will receive 500 kits to help turn more of their residents into lifesavers. Last year’s grant recipients trained nearly 17,000 people with the kits they received, equipping thousands of community members to act as first responders in cardiac arrest emergencies.

This year’s training kit grant winners include: Duluth, Minn., Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Phoenix, Ariz., Richmond, Va., and Rock Hill, S.C. The grants will support the implementation of the Cities of Service Volunteer CPR Blueprint , a high-impact service strategy in which the mayor’s office partners with local medical professionals and emergency responders to train volunteers to use the lifesaving Hands-Only CPR technique. The Blueprint calls for the volunteers, who are trained by professionals, to teach CPR to at least five other residents, vastly improving a community’s ability to respond to sudden cardiac emergencies.

The Volunteer CPR Blueprint is one of 11 customizable Blueprints from Cities of Service. These Blueprints are a set of step-by-step, how-to guides for cities and mayors to leverage volunteer service to move the needle against pressing local challenges.

“Beginning in New York City and replicated in 10 additional cities, Volunteer CPR has helped mayors train close to 150,000 Americans in Hands-Only CPR,” said Katie Leonberger of the Cities of Service coalition. “We’re thrilled to continue our partnership with the American Heart Association and our nation’s mayors to deepen the adoption of this life-saving approach.”

Nearly 400,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur annually in the United States, and 89 percent of Americans die because they don’t receive immediate CPR from someone on the scene. Hands-Only CPR is a quick, easy way to save more lives. If you see a teen or adult suddenly collapse, (1) Call 9-1-1; and (2) Push hard and fast in the center of the chest. Doing these compressions at the proper beat can more than double a person’s chances of survival; coincidentally, the proper beat matches the classic Bee Gees song “Stayin’ Alive.”

“The American Heart Association is working to ensure all Americans know the simple steps to save a life with Hands-Only CPR, creating lifesavers in communities across the U.S.,” said American Heart Association president Mariell Jessup, Ph.D. “We hope all individuals trained by these grants will train their families and peers, helping to spread the knowledge and importance of lifesaving skills.”

Details on the grant recipients:

  • Duluth, Minnesota: The goal of the City of Duluth’s Volunteer CPR initiative is to train 3,000 city residents in Hands-Only CPR in the first year. The City’s partners include the Duluth Fire Department, Duluth Public Schools, and local community organizations. The initiative will target public school students and active volunteers in local community service clubs like the Rotary and Lions Clubs.
  • Ft. Lauderdale, Florida: The goal of the City of Fort Lauderdale’s Volunteer CPR initiative is to train 3,000 city residents in the first year. The city’s partners include the Office of Emergency Management, the Neighbor Support Office, social services, civic associations, and local educational institutions. The initiative will target high school and college students, active community leaders, and boomer volunteers to train friends, neighbors, co-workers, church members, fellow students, family, and loved ones with these lifesaving, Hands-Only CPR skills.
  • Phoenix, Arizona: The goal of the City of Phoenix’s Volunteer CPR initiative is to train 3,000 city residents in the first year. The city’s partners include the Fire Department, which will work in partnership with the Mayor’s Office. The initiative will target city employees, community volunteers, faith-based organizations, and local scout leaders.
  • Richmond, Virginia: The goal of the City of Richmond’s Volunteer CPR initiative is to train 3,000 city residents in the first year. The city’s partners include the Housing Authority and Ambulance Authority. It will target at-risk and socially disadvantaged residents of public housing communities each month at public housing locations during new tenant orientation sessions and during regular Housing Authority programming.
  • Rock Hill, South Carolina: The goal of the City of Rock Hill’s Volunteer CPR initiative is to train 3,000 city residents in the first year. The city’s partners include the Piedmont Medical Center (PMC) Emergency Medical Services (EMS). The initiative will target college students and community volunteers at local volunteer fire departments.

Cities interested in the grant program or joining the Cities of Service coalition can email [email protected] to learn how to get involved.

For more information about Cities of Service, visit and to learn more about Hands-Only CPR, visit                                                                                                                                                 

About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – America’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit or call any of our offices around the country.

About Cities of Service

Founded in September 2009 by former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and 16 other mayors from across the nation, Cities of Service is a bipartisan coalition of mayors committed to addressing critical city needs through impact volunteering. American cities face serious challenges and many mayors want to take advantage of every resource available to them – including the time and energy of public-spirited residents – to address those challenges. But in cities across America today, citizen service is often an underutilized or inefficiently utilized strategy by municipal governments. By leveraging citizen service strategies, Cities of Service helps mayors address local needs and make government more effective. To learn more, visit   or follow us on Twitter @CitiesofService.