PEABODY — The nonprofit agency Bridgewell has been awarded a $128,000 grant to buy defibrillators for its residences and day programs.

Bridgewell provides social and human services for people with disabilities and other life challenges in the North Shore and Merrimack Valley area. The grant is from the Amelia Peabody Charitable Fund.

The money will allow Bridgewell to buy defibrillators for all 66 of its residences, all of its day program locations, and its headquarters. The agency said the need for the defibrillators is immediate because most of its clients have health concerns and are at risk.

It can take paramedics eight to 12 minutes to arrive at the scene, the agency said, and having a defibrillator on site can increase the odds of survival by 20 to 40% in some cases.

The Amelia Peabody Charitable Fund awards grants to non-profit organizations in Massachusetts in the areas of medicine, social welfare, visual arts, historic preservation, and land conservation. Grants are made exclusively for capital projects and capital purchases.

Staff writer Paul Leighton can be reached at 978-338-2535 or pleighton@salemnews.com.

Editor's note: This article has been updated since its original publication to reflect a correction. Bridgewell has 66 residential programs in addition to other clinics and programs. 

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