AN APPEAL has been launched in an ambitious bid to establish almost 600 first aiders in Malvern – enough for one in every single street.
Martin Lawrence, group co-ordinator for the Neighbourhood Watch (pictured), has called on more people to take advantage of the life-saving training which is available for a reduced cost thanks to a partnership between the group and St John Ambulance.
However Mr Lawrence said due to a lack of awareness few people had taken the basic course which often meant the difference between life and death.
He said: “In Malvern we have 592 streets and we should have one first aider in every one.
“We especially want people to approach us in areas where they know there are people who might need first aid.”
He added because Malvern had an older population residents would really benefit from having someone living in the same road who they could turn to in an emergency.
Mr Lawrence said it was important people could go to someone who they knew and trusted and added the idea would improve community spirit.
According to national statistics, 140,000 people a year die in England and Wales in situations where first aid could have helped. St John Ambulance, which teaches first aid to thousands every year, has backed the Neighbourhood Watch’s appeal.
Sam Luke, regional training co-ordinator for the charity, said: “No one should die because they needed first aid and didn’t get it.
“At a St John Ambulance training course you’ll learn how to be the difference between life and death.
“You never know when you might need to use first aid, it could be at home, at work or just out and about.
“If we had one first aider per street across Malvern, we could make a big difference to the chances of saving people’s lives in the town.”
Mr Lawrence also said the Neighbourhood Watch was in desperate need of more co-ordinators with only 67 throughout Malvern at present – around one to every nine streets under the watch’s remit.
He added: “Its very hard to get co-ordinators. The most important thing is that we just get people who want to join us as members.”
Anyone interested in joining the Malvern Neighbourhood Watch or taking up first aid training can contact Martin Lawrence at [email protected] or on 07505 053175.