The Fundraising committee of Ireland West Airport Knock is delighted to announce plans for a campaign to equip all secondary schools in East Mayo with automated external defibrillators (AED). The committee has vowed to commit €25,000 from their annual fundraising event to purchase and install the life saving machines with full training in each East Mayo secondary school. This programme is being rolled out under the guidance of Croi. Croí is a charity dedicated to pursuing and attaining the highest level of Cardiovascular Health Care for the people of the West of Ireland. The Fundraising committee of Ireland West Airport Knock chose to start this ground-breaking campaign in light of the recent and sudden cardiac deaths of Irish secondary students in September of this year. The schools to benefit from this project are; Ballyhaunis Community School, Scoil Muire Agus Padraig, Swinford, St Josephs Secondary School Foxford, St Josephs Secondary School Charlestown and St Louis Community School Kiltimagh.
It will cost approximately €5,000 to buy each defibrillator and to train up to six teachers from each school in using the life saving equipment. Croi will provide this training as well as providing regular validation training thereafter. The committee at Ireland West Airport is dedicated to placing this equipment in each secondary school within East Mayo in the hope that this project will set a president for health and safety regulations in all other schools in Ireland. The committee along with Croi want to send out a strong message that automated external defibrillators are life saving machines that are there as a precaution if ever they are needed and should eventually be in all public places like the obligatory presence of fire safety equipment, as cardiac arrest has no age limits and can occur at any time to anyone.
Commenting on this initiative Emer Burke, Project Co-ordinator, Croí commended: “This project shall play an integral role in meeting the objectives for raising awareness of sudden cardiac death at school level, an issue which the Croí Lifeline Community CPR and defibrillation project is keen to highlight. The employees of Knock Airport are showing true community spirit and vision for the future. It is envisaged that such an initiative could potentially prevent such tragedies as those observed in recent weeks with the Sudden Death of four young people.”
The committee at Ireland West Airport Knock which is made up of ten members of staff have supported local charities through their annual fundraising event since 2003. They have raised €120,000 through a combination of sponsorship and hosting a Gala Fundraising Evening which incorporates an auction and raffle with some wonderful prizes donated by businesses. In 2006 the committee managed to raise €40,000. This year the fundraising theme is “Children” and they are aiming to raise €50,000 with half of the money going to the defibrillator programme and the rest to other local charities including; Mayo Autism Action, Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus and Mayo Roscommon Hospice.
Speaking on behalf of the fundraising committee a spokesperson said: “All so often the West of Ireland is the last to receive many of the vital health programmes and equipment that other parts of the country receive therefore we wanted to give our local community particular our young people the protection of having a defibrillator in their schools. For all secondary schools in East Mayo to be facilitated with these life saving machines is revolutionary and a unique opportunity. We hope that what is happening in these schools in Mayo will be a model for others schools across the country to follow. This initiative is not political it is simply about going out there and raising money for something that we can do to make sure that our young people are protected if ever their lives are in danger.”
f anyone would like to make a donation please email [email protected]
for more information. All proceeds go directly to the selected charities.
Let’s Do it for the Kids!