'Make our communities better:' Milwaukee woman launches program to get more people CPR certified

A Milwaukee woman is launching a new program to get more people CPR certified. It started by asking a simple question: How can I help? 

As an EMT, Sarah Matuszak knows proper CPR can be the difference in a medical emergency. 

"An emergency can happen at any time, and it happens all over the place. It can even happen in people’s homes with a loved one. I think it’s important for people to have the tools so that they feel empowered to be an actor rather than a bystander," said Sarah Matuszak, BLAC Initiative founder/EMT.

But Matuszak knows not everyone has access to training. The $60 certification and $20 book act as a barrier. 

Sarah Matuszak

"It just kind of popped into my head," said Matuszak.  

So Matuszak launched the BLAC Initiative last month. It stands for Black Life Autonomy Through CPR. 

"This idea came from just a general feeling of helplessness that I was kind of sitting with as I watched a multitude of different factors kind of bring about this suffering and pain for communities of color and marginalized individuals," said Matuszak. 

Matuszak is raising money to cover the certification costs so that she can teach CPR to people for free. She already taught one class to 18 new moms. 

"I think it’s time that we take it upon ourselves to promote this kind of looking for knowledge and looking for ways that we can make our communities better," said Matuszak. 

Her goal is simple -- teach as many people as possible. 

There is already a second class scheduled on Aug. 9 at Ashlee's Crazy Yoga Studio on the city's south side.