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St John Wales & WRU grow partnership

St John Wales & WRU grow partnership

St John Wales has teamed up with the Welsh Rugby Union to give first aid training to youngsters from communities across Wales.

A bespoke Rugby Emergency Aid Course for adults has already been developed by the charity, the WRU funded 73 of these courses last season and 66 so far this season, in addition to the provision of first aid kits and equipment.

The first pilot course for young people has now been held at the Millennium Stadium with some 60 children from Oakfield Primary School, St Mellons and Glynderw Comprehensive School, Ely taking part.

The partnership is part of an ambitious aim of St John Cymru Wales to have a first aider in every street in Wales and also supports the Welsh Rugby Union's attempts to ensure the sustainability of rugby clubs in Wales by equipping the volunteers of the future with core skills.

As part of the scheme's pilot launch, the youngsters watched Wales' captain's run as they prepared to play Australia at the Millennium Stadium.

The schoolchildren were all presented with certificates for successfully completing the first aid course and were photographed with Wales players Justin Tipuric and Ian Evans - who used their own knowledge of first aid to put an opposition player into the recovery position during Wales' clash Tonga last month.

The certificate holders also watched the Wales v Australia match at the stadium as a gesture of their achievement in the first course held in the project.

WRU Group Chief Executive Roger Lewis said: "This is an exciting project which builds on the strong foundations of our developing partnership with St John Wales.

"This scheme links rugby and first aid in a way which we hope will attract as many young people as possible to take part.

"Youngsters are the lifeblood of our rugby clubs so it is vital we ensure their sustainability by helping to train our volunteers of the future.

"We all know how important first aid can be in so many aspects of our lives so we are delighted to be helping provide knowledge which can prove to be of such great practical help."

The trainers are all provided by St John Wales with courses covering the basic rules of caring for injured people in emergencies from a primary survey to calling for an ambulance, recovery position, choking, CPR and bleeding.

As part of the pilot, more courses will be held at the Millennium Stadium in the New Year with the potential for the scheme to be rolled out to clubs around Wales in future.

Keith Dunn, Chief Executive of St John Wales said: "We know that first aid saves lives and can prevent minor injuries becoming major ones. We believe that it is never too early to start learning first aid skills. We currently offer training packages to schools across Wales to enable students to learn first aid and we are always looking at ways to expand our training opportunities and reach as many children as possible. This partnership with the WRU helps to bring us closer to our vision of having a first aider on every street in Wales."

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