We Learnt First Aid as a Family: A Case Study
Learning how to do first aid is one of those vital skills that could make a considerable difference and save a life, should an accident occur. We caught up with the Taylor family, who decided to learn first aid skills together. Read on to discover their experiences and why they devoted spare time to learning first aid.
Introducing the TaylorsThe Taylor family are Andy (dad), Maria (mum), Tim, Clare and Kim (kids). So why did they decide to learn first aid?
“The idea of learning first aid together came about from our daughters getting a taster of first aid skills when they were at Brownies and Guides. They both attended a session with a first aider and came back really keen to demonstrate their skills.
As we chatted about the importance of learning first aid, we realised how our skills [Andy and Maria] were extremely poor and rusty, having not had any formal first aid training. It began to hit home that, if one of us was involved in a bad accident, or an accident happened and we were there, we’d feel hopeless and embarrassed to not be able to offer proper help.
That’s how the seed was planted and the idea for learning first aid was born. Then we just had to put it into practice.”
Finding a Family First Aid Course“When we first decided that we’d like to properly gain first aid skills, we’d expected it just to be us doing the training,” explains Maria. “But then Clare and Kim seemed keen to learn more, as they’d only had a short session before, and our son, Tim, was interested too.”
So we started exploring what first aid courses were available locally and soon hit upon the St John Ambulance. They run all sorts of first aid courses, for adults, young people and workers. As we investigated the options, we found that they also do a course especially for families – called Family First Aid – that whole families can go on. It took up some of our spare time, but was an activity we could all do together, which was good for us.”
Learning First Aid Skills“The St John Ambulance course was run locally, so was very convenient, and it was run by an experienced trainer. It was held over several sessions, totally six hours, and on our course, it was tailored specifically for families.
The course looked at the skills we needed to be able to help each other in an emergency situation, whether at home or out and about. We learnt basic first aid skills, such as How To Treat Minor Burns and bleeds, What To Do If Someone Is Choking, how to treat bites, stings and sprains and what to do if someone faints.
The course also went on to look at more serious situation, such as What To Do If Someone Is Unconscious, how to treat head injuries, chest pains, severe bleeding, severe burns, bone and joint injuries, and how to recognise serious conditions, such as poisoning, strokes, seizures, heart attacks and meningitis.
Our children all coped well with the learning and were keen to learn all they could. A lot of practical skills were taught, such as the Recovery Position and how to put people into it, and they also got to have a go at simple resuscitation methods using a dummy and a blow-up lung!”
The Benefits of Learning First Aid“We’re really pleased that we took the step to learning first aid, as we all feel more confident now that we would know what to do if an accident occurs and how to handle the situation.
It’s also good to know that if something happened at home to Andy or I, then our kids are less likely to panic and more likely to be able to offer genuine help, which is reassuring," says Maria. "You never know when accidents will happen, but you have the chance to do something to help, so first aid is an important and potentially life-saving skill to learn.”
As a result of the training, Maria has been appointed the First Aid person at work and is doing some additional training to learn more skills.