Coming Together to Save Lives at the Church of Scientology of Harlem 

Church of Scientology Harlem Community Center hosts World Civil Defense Day program to encourage local residents to be prepared for whatever happens through Volunteer Ministers and EMT (emergency medical technician) training.

In honor of World Civil Defense Day March 1, the Church of Scientology of Harlem Community Center hosted an open house focusing on the skills needed to respond to natural and man-made disasters.

The program featured James “Rocky” Robinson, founder of the Bedford-Stuyvesant Volunteer Ambulance Corps (BSVAC). Those attending watched a video about the partnership between BSVAC and the Scientology Volunteer Ministers in the relief effort following the 2010 Haiti earthquake.

When everyone else was telling Robinson there was no way to get to Haiti to help the victims of the earthquake, Robinson received a call from the Scientologists telling him to go to Hanger 4 at JFK Airport along with his crew. The Scientology Volunteer Ministers had chartered a plane and invited the BSVAC on board. They flew the paramedics to Haiti along with medical supplies and Volunteer Ministers to provide the logistical support they needed to save hundreds of lives.

After the video presentation, Robinson spoke of his trip to Haiti and explained his life’s mission. By providing jobs for youth, they become good members of society rather than choose a life of crime or drug addiction. He offers youth the chance to become members of his ambulance corps. They can survive financially while carrying out a vital community service. Robinson told the audience how he makes sure they succeed: He gives them excellent training—and love. He spoke with pride of his “family,” which he says includes his BSVAC members and the Scientology Volunteer Ministers.

Robinson has trained more than 1,000 EMTs in BSVAC’s 29 years. And he says there is no greater high than saving a person’s life.

After a brief demonstration of CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), Robinson encouraged the audience to get trained and prepared to save a life.

The next speaker was Volunteer Minister Ayal Lindeman, EMT and Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN). He spoke about the practical tools contained in the courses of the Scientology Handbook—the textbook of the Volunteer Minister. It is the skills in these courses that make it possible for the Volunteer Minister to live by the motto “Something can be done about it.” Lindeman stated that first aid comes first in times of disaster and echoed Robinson’s desire to train more EMTs in Harlem. He said that a Volunteer Minister who is also an EMT is uniquely capable of handling emergencies, disasters and problems of life.

Master of ceremonies Shyryllya Bradley Pickett, Community Center vice president, described some of the life skills training available through the Volunteer Ministers program. She screened video presentations on such topics as study and communication skills.

Volunteer Ministers respond to natural and man-made disasters and help people cope with the personal disasters that ruin their lives. From drug addiction to broken families, illiteracy to unemployment, they offer effective help. This knowledge is available to anyone through online courses at the Volunteer Ministers website or app.

The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles in 1954 and the religion has expanded to more than 11,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 167 countries.

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