KAPLAN, La. (KLFY) – As temperatures rise across the state, so does the need to protect vulnerable groups, such as the elderly, from the heat. Unfortunately, energy costs also rise in the summer, which leaves some elderly residents not able to pay utility bills or not able to make needed air condition repairs.
The Kaplan Police Department noticed the need as they made calls in their community, so they decided to do something about it.
The idea all started with one simple donation. The Kaplan Police were contacted about two unwanted air conditioning units that someone wanted to donate to them. This gave them the motivation to see if they could expand on the idea.
“I put it on Facebook and it just blew up,” says Chief Boyd Adams.
Now, Adams is excited to see the growing support for the donation project and the amount of people wanting to get involved, even his own officers.
“The officers started a bucket where they put their own money into buying more units, because so many people are in need,” said Adams.
Medical experts say that the elderly are the most vulnerable group in hot weather, due to a variety of reasons.
“People who have other medical conditions, especially the elderly over 70 who have secondary or chronic conditions–they’re very much prone to heat-related conditions,” says Dr. Sarika Gunda of Lafayette General Urgent Care.
“If you’re looking at something like cramping, maybe they’re not drinking enough fluids, or their medication is making them dehydrated, definitely they have to do adequate hydration,” says Dr. Gunda.
The Kaplan Police Department says its glad to be a part of helping people in their community, but this is what they expect every day they put on the uniform.
“It’s all about helping people, you know, protecting and serving,” says Chief Adams.