Specsavers sponsors free first aid in primary and junior schools

Specsavers will continue its sponsorship of first aid training in primary and junior schools across the Bailiwick (Alderney, Guernsey, Sark and Herm).

The training, delivered by St John Training Services Guernsey, has provided free first aid training for children in years three, four and five since 2008. The ‘not for profit’ organisation also contributes to the year six Safety Calling Challenge in schools.

The support received from Specsavers has enabled St John Training Services Guernsey to teach first aid to around 2,000 students in the last year alone, and a total of around 12,000 students since the programme began in 2008.

Each class is given two one hour sessions of the programme, currently delivered by Katie Sweeney or Suzanne Torode, St John Training Services’ dedicated school’s first aid trainers.

Topics covered in the sessions vary between age groups and range from first aid kits to help with poisons, bites and stings to seizures, chest pain and basic resuscitation.

Originally the course followed the Young First Aider curriculum, but St John have recently introduced the Student First Aid Course which consists of a new flexible syllabus and enables schools to customise the sessions to fit their requirements.

St John Training Services Guernsey’s school first aid trainer, Katie Sweeney, said: “Learning first aid helps young people develop the confidence and skills which in the most severe cases could be the difference between a life lost and a life saved.

“First aid is not only a vital life skill but it also improves self-esteem, fosters a sense of belonging and teaches young people how to make good choices and help others. This is

crucial for the young people of Guernsey and we are delighted that Specsavers has decided to continue its sponsorship for another year.”

Specsavers founder Dame Mary Perkins said: “First aid is a vital life skill and I’m pleased that we’ve been able to support the training of so many children in the island. It means a whole generation is growing up with the skills to help in an emergency situation, which is a huge benefit to the whole community.”

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