You and your community have worked hard to fund raise between £1500-£2000 to provide a life-saving piece of medical equipment that any lay person can use to treat Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA), a time critical condition, responsible for 9,000,000 deaths a year worldwide, that without CPR and Defibrillation has a minimal survival rate.
You fit your equipment; you register it with the Ambulance Service; and everyone celebrates the achievement!
Then after many months and years the equipment falls into disrepair and without a good program of governance and maintenance in place, and in some cases due to vandalism and a lack of funds, the equipment no longer works. In many cases is de-registered with the Ambulance Service as no volunteers are reporting the status of the defibrillator they cannot be sure they are directing someone to a fully functional device.
The Unloved Sites Fund
This is where the Unloved Sites Fund or USF can be a key source of monies to get these devices up and running again and actually save lives. Carrying on the good intentions of those that start projects, but for whatever the reason are unable to maintain them any longer.
This also includes many of the sites we and other organisations have donated to such as homeless shelters and special schools where money is in short supply and fund-raising is difficult, where all it would take is £40-50 to outfit a defibrillator with a new set of pads and renew its life for another 2 years, or £170-220 to provide a battery to power the device for further 4 to 5 years.
Tackling Both Sides Of The Issue
Of course this is only one side of the coin, as the other part of such a project is to not only make available a fund for people to apply to, but to also identify local individuals that can look after the devices with the help and support of Community Heartbeat Trust. CHT already provide the UK's only comprehensive online governance system, including registrations and reports for the Ambulance Services and assistance with maintenance for the sites for their life-time of operation. We do this as a charitable benefit at no cost to sites. Currently with around 5500 UK Communities and make available to all
To summarise your donation to this campaign will be used for;
- Outfitting available defibrillators with new components to bring them back online where there is a funding shortfall.
- Allow us to continue to provide a free framework, governance system and phone support to cover all governance and legal issues for the communities and volunteer checkers of those sites, so can do the important bit, which is to report on the defibrillator to make sure it's Rescue Ready!
- Get devices re-registered with local ambulance services so that the beneficiaries are the local community as a whole, as anyone can be sent to a registered defib if needed when calling 999 in a rescue and therefore anyone can be a potential life-saver if the defibrillator is fully functional and available!
The Defibrillator Availability Bill did not pass through parliament as the current government's current stance is that other charitable organisations and communities are working to provide life-saving defibrillators across the country and therefore the government will not offer further support.
So it is up to us as individuals, organisations and charities to maintain this network for the benefit of all society. Our aim is to change the 60,000 people a year suffering a Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) in the UK from a 2% chance of survival to 50% and above.
Join us and become a Heartbeat Hero!
The Community Heartbeat Trust Charity