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Worth Valley First Responders need new recruits
A voluntary organisation which won an accolade in the Bradford’s Best Community Awards is appealing for more members.
Members of Worth Valley Community First Responders, who won the Best Community Group award at the ceremony in Bradford on Saturday, are appealing for others to join their ranks.
The first-aiders, who are called out to give life-saving treatment in remote areas that paramedic crews might take longer to reach, are hoping to attract at least four more volunteers.
The group has 16 volunteers to cover seven days a week. They have attended 500 calls since the organisation was set up in May 2008.
In February this year, the group suffered a tragedy when its 29-year-old co-ordinator, James Lee, died of a heart attack after collapsing in Brow Road, Haworth. The first person on the scene was one of his First Responder colleagues, Michael Sinfield.
Peter Hill, a founder member and chairman, who volunteers with his wife, Gill, said: “Ideally we would like 20-plus members which would help spread the load and enable members to be on call once or twice a month.
“We all have jobs and people do as much as they can but it isn’t easy covering seven days a week.
“It’s very rewarding work. It’s like giving a present – you get more pleasure in the giving and you get a big buzz out of helping someone in a life-threatening situation.
“The other day I was taking in the milk and someone stopped and asked if I was a responder.
“She wanted to thank us for helping her 37-year-old son who had suffered a heart attack and was now recovering.”
Members are taught skills in using a defibrillator and in giving oxygen by the Yorkshire Ambulance Service.
They are alerted by pager by the First Responder operator in Wakefield.
“Our aim is to reduce the patient’s stress and anxiety, make them comfortable and give oxygen before the paramedics get there,” said Mr Hill.
Anyone interested in joining the group should contact Mr Hill on (01535) 644868 or 07836 363136.