Life-support scheme receives national recognition

Life-support scheme receives national recognition

Increasingly, more life-saving defibrillators are being installed in communities across Great Britain and Ireland. Now, one Rotary-supported scheme in the west country has received nationwide recognition.

A west country Rotary member has been honoured as part of a team involved in a life-saving initiative in Gloucestershire.

Kevin Dickens, who is an honorary member of Rotary Cleeve Vale, collected a prestigious team award at the 2018 Heart Safe Awards held at the Hilton Hotel in Manchester.

Kevin is part of the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWAST), which has been working closely with Rotary District 1100 on a project to create heart-safe environments across the region.

Kevin, the Community Responder Officer for Gloucestershire, said: “To win this award is a huge credit to our team, our volunteers, and the people with whom we’ve engaged to create cardiac-safe environments across the south-west by raising awareness of basic life-support and defibrillator stations.”

Kevin Dickens been the inspiration behind the various defibrillator projects within the area”

Recently, working closely with Gloucestershire Police, automated external defibrillators (AEDs) have been installed in pubs.

Money was needed for the Gloucester city centre programme and, in typical Rotary fashion, volunteers from a number of Rotary clubs raised more than £3,000 from a bucket collection.

This ensured completion of the Gloucester project.

Cleeve Vale member, Colin Prottey, paid tribute to Kevin remarking:  “Kevin Dickens been the inspiration behind the various defibrillator projects within the SWAST area of operation for more than 10 years.

“He has helped to install AEDs in schools, colleges, sports clubs and in semi-rural communities throughout Gloucestershire, with financial help and additional involvement given by many other District 1100 clubs.

“More than 40 AEDs have been installed.”

The UK Heart Safe Association has said it is committed make this a national initiative.  The award recognises organisations, including local authorities and emergency services who have invested in life-saving equipment and staff training to provide heart-safe environments for their employees and the public.

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