Community babysitter course featured at reduced rate

  • Jul. 23, 2014 6:39 p.m.

On Aug. 9th, St. John Ambulance will be offering the ‘What Every Babysitter Should Know’ course at a reduced rate through their Sponsor A Sitter program.

The Sponsor A Sitter initiative offers a subsidy that allows economically disadvantaged youth ages 11 and up to take the St. John babysitting course, What Every Babysitter Should Know, for a lower cost.

“The course is open to anyone who wishes to be a baby sitter ages 11 to 16 and through this program we can afford the opportunity to offer the course to young people who may not otherwise been able to afford it,” explained Alison Brodie, business development coordinator for St. John Ambulance.

“The public course, What Every Babysitter Should Know, typically costs $50, but through the Sponsor A Sitter program we are able to offer the course to students at $20.”

St. John Ambulance also wishes to encourage people to Sponsor A Sitter themselves and help a child become a babysitter.

Brodie explained that those wishing to get involved with the program by sponsoring a sitter may write a cheque or deliver $45 to their local St. John Ambulance location after which they will receive a charitable donation tax receipt.

This $45 will then be used to cover the cost of the course as well as to provide that student with the standard gift bag given to each graduate of the course, which contains items that will help them out when they begin babysitting such as a CPR mask, wet wipes and crayons.

Those wishing to Sponsor A Sitter should call Alison Brodie at 403-327-2847 ext. 6104 or email her at

“We know kids are often staying home alone or watching other kids whether they have the training or not,” said Brodie. “Sometimes kids in that age range even just want to get out and make some extra money, so it’s really important that they are trained in emergency preparedness because you never know what could happen.”

She went on to explain, “During the course they learn how to deal with a variety of basic babysitting situations, such as how to feed a baby, change a diaper and how to properly hold a baby.

“They also learn how to deal with emergencies that may arise such as a power outage, if they smell gas in the house or if they suspect there is a prowler around the house. They will also learn basic first aid practices such as how to handle a child choking, how to do CPR on infants and children, and how to deal with cuts, burns, and bruises.”

While donations are always a help to St. John Ambulance, thanks to a partnership with community members Prosser Charitable Foundation, Stollery Charitable Foundation, as well as Superstores and Walmarts throughout the province, donations are not necessary for the program to continue.

Those wishing to register for the Sponsor A Sitter and take the babysitting course at the reduced rate on Aug. 9th may call St. John Ambulance Red Deer at 1-800-665-7114 or visit their office at 6519 67 St.