Welsh Ambulance Service thanks Gilfach Goch for CFR support
AT A recent training course for five newly-recruited Community First Responders (CFRs), the Welsh Ambulance Service presented a certificate of appreciation in grateful recognition of the support provided by Gilfach Goch Community Association and Taf Cluster Communities First for the work in training CFRs to help save lives in the local community.
Matt Robertson, Taf Cluster Communities First and Kate O’Sullivan, Manager of Gilfach Goch Community Association, received the certificate from Welsh Ambulance Service Chief Executive Tracy Myhill:
“Gilfach Goch is home territory for me”, said Tracy Myhill, “So it’s with great pride that I find myself presenting a certificate to people of my own community who have shown not only such tremendous support to the Welsh Ambulance Service, but by actively enabling the training of Community First Responders they have also shown their care and concern for their own community.”
The CFR training course was delivered by three trainers, Gilfach Goch resident and Welsh Ambulance Service Unscheduled Care Services (UCS) technician Mark Priddle, Neal Jones, Cynon Valley CFRs, and David Thomas, Welsh Ambulance Service Paramedic.
The building and its facilities are provided free of charge to the Welsh Ambulance Service specifically to train CFRs who will in turn provide life-saving support in the Gilfach Goch community.
Matt Robertson of Communities First commented: “We have a close relationship with the Welsh Ambulance Service and that’s been the case for many years now. It’s a two way thing really. By supporting the training of local CFRs we are also helping people in the surrounding communities and hopefully providing a chance of survival that, in the event of a cardiac arrest, some of them may not get otherwise.”
The Welsh Ambulance Service has over 160 CFRs in the Cwm Taf Health Board area, and over 2,000 across Wales as a whole.
UCS, Gilfach Goch resident and CFR Mark Priddle added: “The Welsh Ambulance is currently investing additional money into the Community First Responders programme across Wales and areas like Rhondda Cynon Taf will hopefully see the benefit from this investment.
“Being a Community First Responder requires some time and commitment, but the satisfaction of being able to perhaps save the life of a family member, friend, neighbour, colleague or stranger makes it all worthwhile.”
The Welsh Ambulance Service is currently looking for more recruits in the Gilfach Goch, Aberfan, Blaencwm, Cynon, Maerdy, Merthyr Tydfil, Pontyclun, Porth, Pontypridd, Tonypandy, Tonyrefail, Treharris, Troedyrhiw, Ynysybwl and Ynysowen areas.”
Community First Responders play an important role alongside frontline ambulance staff in making sure patients receive appropriate help quickly and efficiently, explained the Welsh Ambulance Services’ Cwm Taf Locality Manager Sally Gronow: “Community First Responders are very much part of the whole Welsh Ambulance Service family. They are a valuable support and I am personally proud to be associated with such dedicated life saving schemes in Wales.”
To become a First Responder you must be over 18 years of age, be physically fit and hold a clean UK driving licence. Applicants need to successfully complete over 30 hours of training, and will also need to undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service check and Occupational Health check before being registered to the scheme.