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Becoming Lifesavers - Over 500 People Learn Cpr Skills For Restart A Heart Day

More than 500 people took part in free community CPR training on Friday 14 October, as Wellington Free Ambulance recognised Restart a Heart Day by providing free CPR demonstrations and quick one-on-one training sessions all day at Wellington Airport.

Restart a Heart Day takes place every year on 16 October. To acknowledge the day, each year Wellington Free Ambulance joins forces with the Council of Ambulance Authorities and other ambulance services around the world to collectively raise awareness about sudden cardiac arrests and train as many people as possible in CPR and how to use an AED.

A sudden cardiac arrest is a medical emergency that can strike anyone, at any time, at any age, anywhere. It could happen to a toddler in bed, a 22-year-old athlete on a sports field, a hardworking middle-aged mum at home, or a grandfather enjoying his retirement.

Every week, on average six people in Greater Wellington/Wairarapa will suffer a sudden cardiac arrest. Survival rates can be increased by up to 80% with early CPR and the use of an AED, and this is why it is really important to Wellington Free Ambulance that as many people as possible are trained to know these essential, life-saving skills.

Wellington Airport’s Brand and Sponsorship Manager Jo Maxwell says the airport is thrilled with the large number of people taking part.

“Learning CPR only takes a few minutes but can potentially save lives. We were very proud to support this cause by hosting Wellington Free Ambulance, and we had an excellent response from travellers,” says Jo.

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Rachel Evans, Senior Heartbeat Coordinator at Wellington Free Ambulance, comments, “Our message is simple. You don’t need to be a paramedic to save someone’s life. You just need to be able to perform CPR and know how to use an AED. We want as many people as possible to learn how to do this.”

For those who didn’t have the opportunity to learn CPR at Wellington Airport on Friday, Wellington Free Ambulance also offers CPR training courses year round. Thanks to the very generous support of Julie Nevett and The Lloyd Morrison Foundation, this training is provided completely free of charge for the Greater Wellington and Wairarapa community. Over the past year Wellington Free Ambulance has trained almost 2,000 people through this programme, which is available to businesses, schools and community groups throughout the Greater Wellington and Wairarapa region.

Rachel Evans comments, “Anyone and everyone can learn CPR and make a life-changing difference. It’s really easy to learn – we’ve taught people from age 5 to 95. Absolutely anyone can give it a go.”

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