The American Ambulance Association has given Porter EMS a national 2017 AMBY Award for Charitable Giving and Engagement, recognizing the department’s continued commitment and success in supporting the communities they serve.
The award will be officially bestowed at the American Ambulance Association annual conference and trade show on Nov. 14.
“For us, taking care of the community has always been about more than answering 911 calls and transporting patients via ambulance. That will always be our core work and focus, and we will continue to strive for excellence there. But our teams at Porter EMS are very engaged in giving back to the community whenever we can. It’s nice to see our team recognized for that,” said Ann Brandl, Director of Porter EMS.
The award came after Porter EMS was nominated for the multiple ways in which crews gave back in 2017. In February, Porter EMS donated a decommissioned ambulance to the not-for-profit Porter County Search and Rescue team – an all-volunteer group comprising local fire and EMS personnel who support law enforcement entities in search and rescue missions. The group was in need of a support and storage vehicle that could also act as a mobile warming and cooling station during their missions.
In April, Porter EMS helped stuff thousands of prize eggs that were included in Porter County’s largest Easter Egg hunt – a community-wide events that included photos with the Easter Bunny, live music, crafts, face painting, bounce houses, and more. The $12,000 in proceeds from the event benefited the local Salvation Army.
This past summer, Porter EMS sponsored a one-day EMS Conference for emergency responders throughout Indiana, and incorporated a give-back component to the event. That, along with several other events throughout the year, helped raised $5,000, which was donated to 500 Turkeys, Inc. – a local charity that feeds constituents in Porter County all year long. Porter EMS, along with Porter Health Care System, donates hundreds of turkeys for this cause to help feed more than 1,000 local families at Thanksgiving.
This fall, the Porter EMS team raised more than $5,000 for the American Heart Association Heart Walk in Northwest Indiana, and is hosting the 2nd annual Turkey Bowl – a friendly flag football tournament among area first responders, EMS, fire, and medical professionals to raise additional funds for 500 Turkeys, Inc.
“We are just a small piece of these community-wide events that support such great causes, but we are always committed to developing and contributing to meaningful events in our community,” Brandl said. “When one of our team members sees a need in the community, our whole department jumps in to respond, and it feels good to give back in these ways. We are privileged to serve and look forward to continuing our mission.”
Porter EMS is Porter County’s 911 EMS provider, covering more than 500 square miles of county ground. The department also provides transport services for patients who need to be taken to and from locations via ambulance in non-911 situations.