23rd January 2013
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The charity has set a target of £60,000 to enable them to buy the equipment and also fund the ongoing training supplied by St John ambulance. In 2012 CHF purchased defibrillators for all High schools, Football clubs, Rugby clubs and some other sports facilities, 55 machines in total. Charity chairman Paul Healey said of the campaign 'it’s something we have been looking at for a while and our treasurer Stephen Corran came up with a great idea to start the campaign at the beginning of 2013. We already screen the hearts of men and women between the ages of 14 and 35 on the island and because of the age restrictions this enables us to give parents of younger children a bit of comfort that if anything was to happen to their child in primary school then there is a piece of equipment on hand that could potentially save their life. We have the full support of the department of education and recently explained what we want to achieve to all primary school headteachers, with everyone in favour'. Tim Crookall MHK, Minister for Education and Children, said: ‘We are extremely grateful to Craig’s Heartstrong Foundation for launching an appeal aimed at equipping primary schools with defibrillators. ‘The gift comes after the charity kitted out all our secondary schools with similar equipment last year. Two of our primaries already have defibrillators, as they have pupils with heart conditions, but for the rest these will be welcome additions to their first aid kit. It’s the sort of gift everyone, including those donating it, hope will never be used but statistics show that using a defibrillator on a patient who has stopped breathing greatly increases the person’s chance of survival. We are pleased to support Craig’s Heartstrong Foundation’s fund-raising by making the primary defibrillator appeal our head office’s first ever ‘charity of the year’ and we plan to run events through the year to contribute to the total. We are also grateful to St John Ambulance for offering initial and ongoing training school staff in the use of the defibrillators.’ CHF was set up in memory of Craig Lunt who passed away in 2005 suffering from a heart defect he and his family didn't know he had. The charity still holds 2 heart screening weekends a year with the help of uk charity cardiac risk in the young and have so far screened over 3,000 people on the island with some amazing results. Craig's mum and charity secretary Paula Lunt said 'we hope the machines can provide comfort to parents and teachers if anything bad should happen but we also hope the machines never need to be used. If one machine out of 35 over the next few years can save just one life then all the fundraising will have worked' Paul Healey added 'the support of the Manx public over the last few years has enabled us to meet our goals on several occasions and with this campaign we hope that with all of you support again we will be able to hit our target and get these defibrillators in all primary schools as soon as we can' There are already a few fundraising events planned with a quiz night at the British pub on valentines night, Ian Moffitt's marathon challenge and CHF have their own dinner on June 14th with guest speaker Matt Le Tissier and impressionist Les Gibson. The event is kindly sponsored by Pokerstars and tickets cost £50, tables of 10 are available. Please call Paul on 460918 for more info. The next heart screening weekend is to be on 13th & 14th April at the palace hotel. If you are between the ages of 14 & 35 you can book you FREE appointment at Follow the charity on twitter @CHFIOM or Facebook - Official Craig's Heartstrong Foundation

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