“Project Lifesaver” hoping for more life saving technology

You can help by attending RTAAF Gala
Parents have a lot to worry about these days and if one of their children or young adults has...
Parents have a lot to worry about these days and if one of their children or young adults has autism the fear of them wondering away and getting hurt, lost or worse is something most say they worry about constantly.(KTTC)
Published: Feb. 1, 2023 at 5:18 PM CST
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in forty four children has been identified with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Far too many times, kids and young adults with autism wonder away from the watchful eye of a family member and finding them is no guarantee. When seconds matter, technology can make all the difference.

“Individuals who walk away don’t know where they are going and don’t know what’s dangerous and what isn’t dangerous. They will hide in normal places people wouldn’t go into. They my go sit down and not respond to calls for help, where with the technology now helps us find those areas. It will track to right where they are at,” said officer Greg Jeardeau, from the Rochester Police Department.

This wrist watch piece and tracking gear is the game changer for “Project Lifesaver” and law enforcement. These devices talk to each other through radio frequencies. Recovery times for finding someone lost is around 20 to 30 minutes. Upgrades to the gear are being requested to speed that time up and for a better vantage point.

Asking for technology upgrades to better serve the community.
Asking for technology upgrades to better serve the community.(KTTC)

“If your listening to the radio in your car and your listening and it gave a good signal, but now you go down in the valley and lose the signal completely, now imagine yourself now going up in the air with a drone and how much better of a signal with nothing blocking it,” said Jeardeau.

But the group helping pay for this technology needs support and so they’re hosting a fundraiser this weekend as a fun way to raise money for the RT Autism Awareness Foundation

“We’re doing ok, be we can’t wait to be thriving again. So that we can make sure we give this program everything it needs equipment wise to keep our community members safe. So when you ask who benefits from this I’ll say all of us,” explained the Executive Director from RTAAF Elizabeth Mangan.

The children who will benefit may never fully understand the effort that goes into keeping them safe, but make no mistake, their parents certainly do.

The non-profit autism group in Rochester, RTAAF supports families in various ways. They’re putting on a gala fundraiser this Saturday at 6:00pm at the Rochester International Event Center featuring dinner, dancing, a silent auction and a raffle. Tickets are still available. Click here to learn more.