The ‘Defibs-for-Southwater’ project achieved a significant milestone this week when Debs Spraget and her team from Coco’s Style Southwater handed over a cheque for £2,266 to Southwater Responders.
The project aims to install more defibrillators around the village or relocate existing ones to make them more widely accessible.
This includes the conversion of an old, disused BT phone box on Shipley Road into a potentially life-saving Public Access Defibrillator (PAD).
The funding from Coco’s will pay for the refurbishment of the kiosk and the installation of both a cabinet and defibrillator.
In the event of someone experiencing an ‘Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest’ (OHCA) the availability of a defibrillator can significantly increase their survival rate.
Debs Spraget said that Coco’s had already donated a defibrillator to Southwater Responders and are always willing to support the well-being of the village community.
Coco’s raised the funds through a variety of events including a pub quiz, a raffle and a yoga night.
The cabinet and defibrillator for the phone box are being procured with the support of Trimbio, a local medical equipment supplies company.
Trimbio have also donated a defibrillator unit that will be located in Southwater Country Park as part of the Defibs-for-Southwater project.
Trimbio managing director, Simon Francis, said: “After working with these devices for several years, I realise not only how important they are, but also that there is a shortage of them in public places, therefore it is great to be able to support my local community with a device.”
The Shipley Road phone box will be refurbished, and the PAD installed, within the next couple of months and the Country Park PAD should be in place within a similar time frame.
Southwater Responders will be providing PAD and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) awareness and familiarisation sessions for village residents so that they are confident about how to use a defibrillator and provide basic life support until the arrival of paramedics.