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How to Start an Anti-Choking Awareness Campaign

May 19, 2019

How to Start an Anti-Choking Awareness Campaign

At Dechoker, one of the comments we hear often from families who have been through a choking emergency is that they “never thought it would happen to them.” Choking is one of those things that we all know is out there, but that most people really don’t give any thought to until it’s too late.

We believe that more awareness about choking prevention and treatment could save lives. Not every emergency can be prevented, but more people could be ready for those emergencies when they do arise.

So how do we raise that awareness? Here are some steps most people can take in their own lives to spread the word about choking and how to prevent it from becoming fatal.

Educate Yourself

Before you can educate others on any issue, you need to know your stuff. A great place to start learning about choking prevention and first aid is right here on our blog, where you can find posts on everything from high-risk foods to how to identify choking and what to do next. You can also learn on our website about choking statistics, such as the surprising fact that a child dies in the U.S. every five days from choking. Most importantly of all, you should educate yourself about first-aid treatments, including abdominal thrusts, back slaps and The Dechoker.

Decide on Your Audience

Your next step is deciding whom you want to spread the word to. We believe a grassroots approach is a strong choice. Start with the people in your immediate community, who are already interested in what you have to say. This can be a trusted group of friends and family or members of a community or church organization.

Another option is to focus on people who have a vested interest in learning about choking in particular. For instance, the risk of choking is much higher for children age 5 and younger, as well as elderly people. This makes parents and caregivers of both of those age groups a great audience. Reach out to other families from your child’s daycare or school. Connect with the team at your elderly relative’s care facility, or find a community group that serves older people.

Get Online

The old days of spreading awareness with flyers and newspaper ads have changed. Those approaches may still be effective for some, but we recommend any good awareness campaign also come with a strong online presence. Here are some things you should do:

  • Set up a website. There’s only so much information you can put in front of someone with a traditional ad or flyer, but the internet has no such limits. Choosing a simple URL and building a website on a service such as Wix or Squarespace has never been easier, and it’s a great place to put all the information you want to share.
  • Start social media accounts. Harness the power of the screens that are so often right in front of us! Set up a choking awareness account on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms that are relevant to your audience. Regular updates on these platforms help keep choking at the forefront of people’s minds.
  • Send regular emails. Start collecting email addresses early on so you can reach out to your audience any time you have news to share. This also helps you develop credibility and gives your audience a reliable way to reach you.

Host an Event

Passing information along is wonderful, but it sticks in people’s minds a lot better if they have an event that gets them directly involved. For choking, a great option is to reach out to local first responders or healthcare organizations to set up a demonstration event. Invite an expert to come teach people first-aid treatments such as abdominal thrusts or using The Dechoker. Events can also be online. Have some kind of raffle or giveaway that encourages people to learn more about your campaign. Be sure to promote your events using social media and email.

Empower Your Audience

In all that you do in your awareness campaign, remember to empower people with hope, information and preparedness. A topic like choking can be scary. You want people to understand the risk, but still want to learn more. Show your audience that a simple action, such as learning about first-aid treatments, can make a huge difference in the safety of their loved ones.


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