Naas First Responders need more volunteers

Life saving work

Paul O'Meara

Reporter:

Paul O'Meara

Email:

paul@leinsterleader.ie

Naas First Responders need more volunteers

Zoe Banim (centre) who designed the Naas First Responders logo, with Amanda Ross and Glen Whelan

A group of First Responders set up in Naas in July is looking for volunteers.

Naas Community First Responders is a voluntary organisation set up by people in the local community.

They are civilian responders who work with the National Ambulance Service. When emergency services are alerted to a case of cardiac arrest, chest pain, choking or a stroke, members of a First Responder team will be dispatched to the scene to perform emergency life saving treatment while waiting on the ambulance service to arrive. Because the responders live in the local area they can arrive within minutes of a call and administer CPR and reassurance to patients until the ambulance arrives.

The quick response can increase the sick person’s chances of survival.

The Naas group has had three public meetings since the summer and the committee has been meeting at least every three weeks since September working to get the group up and going.

Those interested need not have any experience because full training is given, and they use a ‘buddy system’. This means that no responder responds to a call alone but will always have support. The group also wants to hear from people who are just interested in fundraising.

Raising money is necessary to pay for defibrillators as well as uniforms, training and insurance — so support and donations from the community are greatly appreciated. First Responders are only sent to a call within a 5km radius of their community.

The Naas group which has its own logo which was designed by Zoe Banim (picture), recently staged a demonstration and a fundraising bucket collection at the Monread Shopping Centre.

The First Responder role was initially developed in the US.