Yorkshire Ambulance Service staff visited schools across Calderdale today (Tuesday) as part of a massive project to teach lifesaving techniques to pupils.
Calder High School, Hipperholme Grammar School, The Crossley Heath School and Halifax Academy were among 106 schools in Yorkshire to take part in the service’s Restart a Heart Day, in which experts offered advice and training on what to do if someone goes into cardiac arrest.
The widow of Halifax RLFC player Danny Jones – who died after suffering a heart attack during a match – Lizzie Jones, is this year’s campaign ambassador and took part in the training.
Lizzie, from Northowram, said: “I am proud to become an ambassador for Restart a Heart Day when thousands of youngsters will be given the skills and confidence to save the life of someone who has suffered a cardiac arrest.
“I have been working hard to provide defibrillators for local rugby and sports clubs and the promotion of CPR training for schoolchildren is a natural link to this.
“I am thrilled to be associated with another valuable project which means Danny’s death will not have been in vain.”
Meanwhile, Community groups and organisations across the county have raised money to install defibrillators public places where they might be needed the most.
Sowerby Bridge Rotary Club has raised money and worked along other organisations to install 14 defibrillators in the town and neighbouring areas.
Rotary club president elect Hazle Brindle said the cause was close to her heart because her nephew, Andrew Cadwallader, 49, died following a heart attack playing football in 2014 while his son was watching.
She said: “It was terrible. A lot of members of my family have heart complaints so in that respect the cause is very close to me.
“It reminds you have valuable life is. I would say to any other groups if they can raise the funds they should have them installed. What better way can you serve humanity than saving a life?”
Meanwhile Nikki Nunn and Claire Clarke, from Halifax, ran 52 miles to raise money for a defibrillator at Old Rishworthians RUFC in Copley.
Claire said: “Lives can be saved if these machines are available at time when the person has a life threatening episode. We are only too aware that Danny Jones was taken too early from the rugby family.”