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Rest easy by learning first aid

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Caroline Buckley

Accidents are an unavoidable fact of everyday life, but do we know how to respond when they happen? One Stoke Newington resident, Caroline Buckley, runs regular workshops to teach whole families about first aid.

Caroline launched the group, Family First Aid, after eight years working as a qualified first aid trainer for St John Ambulance. It is an opportunity for families to learn first aid, allowing them to feel confident to deal with medical emergencies such as choking, bleeds, burns, heart attacks, head injuries and CPR. These can all be learnt in a home, workplace or community space.

“I am a long-time Stoke Newington resident and love this area and its diversity,” she tells Hackney Magazine.

“I’m also the mum of two teenagers, I have trained in schools, disability centres and young offenders institutes, and have managed a project that trained more than 30,000 young people in first aid across north and east London.

“I know first-hand the importance of having the knowledge and confidence to provide first aid to help others. We all get injured at some point in our lives, as do those we love. For some of us, information learnt at these workshops can be life changing.”

Caroline says no-one should suffer from a lack of first aid when they are injured. Around 68 percent of life-threatening calls are responded to in under 8 minutes in Hackney by our ambulance service, but the remainder need our care too and NHS is under strain.

The trouble is that many people don’t think about learning first aid until the day they need it, she says, but the peace of mind that comes with knowing how to care for our families is priceless.

Family First Aid offers services tailored to the customer, be they parents with a new baby or a child who is becoming more independent, or a carer for an elderly relative. As a member of Hackney Council’s board of trustees for voluntary service, Caroline is closely integrated within the community.

One local mother said: “When our son turned 12, he was starting to venture out with friends and was spending time at home alone. A session from Caroline helped us feel more confident that if an accident happened, he would have the skills to be able to respond.”

Another client told her: “When my father fell ill with a stroke a few months ago I was terrified and did not know how to act. This training is so important – anyone can deliver first aid using the skills learnt in these workshops.”

She offers services to sports groups as well as individuals. One football club said: “We had Caroline run a session for our football club. It was really helpful for both the coaches and parents.”

Prices for Family First Aid start from £20. For more details on individual, tailored, private lessons in your home, one hour local group sessions or corporate packages, visit the Family First Aid web site familyfirstaid.co

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