Volunteers show true Resilience over Festive Period

Manazah Pervez

Community First Responder Volunteers stepped up to the mark to support YAS and its patients this Christmas. During the busiest time of the year for the Ambulance Service, further compounded by the flooding in the area, volunteers were encouraged to book on duty as much as possible and they did in their droves. Over the two weeks from 21 Dec to 4 Jan CFRs in Yorkshire were on duty for over 13,000 hours and attended 1133 incidents; a 94% increase on average incidents over the same period.

On Wednesday 30 December there were 110 volunteer resources booked on duty, a record in the schemes 15 year history!

In addition to routine calls CFRs across the county offered additional support and performed over and above the call of duty. Following the collapse of the town’s bridge due to the floods, Julian Hall at Tadcaster coordinated CFR cover at either side of the bridge and liaised with Tadcaster Medical Centre to assist them in reopening. An AED was provided by YAS in order that they could do this.

Volunteer Matt Harrow from the Todmorden scheme was unable to get his car out due to the flooding in the area but put his wellies on and walked to call, 20 minutes, still arriving first on scene. He then helped a distressed old lady he came across on the way home.

Lynne Speight from Cleckheaton CFR scheme attended  5 cardiac arrests over the festive period,  two of which resulted in a ROSC and received two messages of thanks from crews. WCR04 Ilkey responded amongst the worst of the weather conditions and was able to provide support and reassurance to patients.

In a new initiative CFRs volunteered to staff schemes which were not on duty in other areas. For example, volunteers from WCR12 Scotthall & WCR02 Micklefield  went to respond in the Harrogate & Knaresborough area to ensure cover was provided at times it otherwise would not have been.

In addition to all of the above, in another trial of a new idea, volunteers came in to support the ARD desk during busy periods by taking calls from fellow CFRs when they completed incidents. This trial will continue throughout January and will be assessed as to its effectiveness.

The Community Resilience Team are incredibly proud of the commitment and enthusiasm shown by all its volunteers who played a part over this difficult period, what an amazing bunch of people!




If my community needs me I want to be there!