Creating a generation of lifesavers – Great Western Air Ambulance Charity
Jerry’s Story
October 11, 2018
Proud winners of two awards at Bristol and Bath Health and Care Awards
October 25, 2018

Creating a generation of lifesavers

We’re celebrating Restart a Heart Day today by talking about our Great Western Heart Starters (GWHS) programme where we’re hoping to create a generation of lifesavers in our region. Restart a Heart Day takes place on 16 October every year and aims to create awareness that everyone can learn CPR.

The GWHS programme was launched in 2017 targeting school pupils in years 8-10 with the vision to make sure that no pupil leaves secondary school within our area without being able to confidently deliver bystander CPR. The sessions are delivered by a team of volunteer medical professionals (doctors, nurses, paramedics and medical/healthcare students) who also get extra training from us to be able to deliver the workshops. The sessions are interactive and hands on, ensuring the training process is fun and stimulating. We aim to have one volunteer between 6-8 pupils to enable pupils to get the best out of their learning experience.

One of the GWHS volunteers, Sarah Tester, said: “For me, being able to help teach CPR/recovery position in schools is vital. I have always believed that this should be a part of the national curriculum. As a paramedic working front line there has been an increase and willingness for people to start CPR now there is an emphasis on chest compressions and no mouth-to-mouth. Education is key to helping people survive and to hopefully make a good recovery to leave hospital and return to their families. I really enjoy being a part of the GWHS scheme.”

In a situation where someone’s life is in danger, every minute counts. Our crew can be anywhere in the region that we cover within 20 minutes, but the care that the person receives before we get there can play a vital part in their survival. Everyone should know basic CPR skills, and the charity is passionate about helping people get the skills and the confidence to use them.

GWAAC has 127 volunteer heart starters and in 2017 1,845 pupils benefited from the programme so far.

Find out by clicking here how to get involved and how you can help GWAAC today.