The Community Foundation of Jackson County awarded Springbrook EMS a $20,000 grant on Nov. 21. The money will help fund the Paramedic Access in Rural Areas (PARA) program, buying $2,000 bags of medication and equipment that can travel with paramedics, bringing advanced life support tools closer to rural residents. The grant will “literally help save lives,” said Joe Deppe of Springbrook EMS.

The goal is to get more medication and equipment to people more quickly, making emergency response more nimble and capitalizing on health care workers who live in small communities but find their hands tied if local EMS aren’t licensed to provide advanced care.

“We expect it to grow,” Deppe said, adding that medical professionals in the Preston and Sabula area have also expressed interest in training to join the paramedic program.

The group is continuing to fundraise privately for equipment. The grant will allow help “to be in the right place at the right time with the right tools,” Deppe added.