Lucy in Conversation With: Community First Responders – Student Volunteering Week Special Edition
Leeds Student Community First Responders
Our volunteers are trained by Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS) as Community First Responders.
They provide care to seriously ill patients in the local community before an ambulance arrives. Our scheme is based in north-west Leeds and comprises 60 student volunteers from the University of Leeds. We book ‘on-call’ in pairs, with a driver and passenger on each shift. Our scheme is led by a committee of volunteers, under the governance of YAS’s Community Resilience Team.
Our scheme is primarily open to medical and healthcare students. However, we will consider applications from other students who demonstrate the required commitment and interest in our scheme, including a minimum of two years volunteering and 15 hours per month.
As a CFR, you will be able to:
Support people in your local community at their time of need
Get hands-on experience caring for patients early in their illness
Experience working in areas of Leeds outside the ‘student bubble’
Work with and learn from ambulance crews in acute settings
Join a close-knit team of medical and healthcare students from all years
Attend our CPD sessions on topics relevant to emergency medicine and prehospital care
All prospective volunteers must apply during our annual recruitment process in the autumn. If successful they must complete YAS’ mandatory CFR paperwork requirements (including an enhanced DBS check) and attend and pass an initial training course. Revalidation occurs annually. More details are available at www.cfrleeds.org.uk.
We hold monthly CPD events for volunteers to enhance and practice their skills. We cover both topics that are relevant to the CFR scope of practice and more general topics in prehospital care. Past topics have included:
Resuscitation ‘pitstop’ masterclass
The short of breath patient
Conflict resolution skills
Volunteering at multi-agency major incident exercises
Introduction to prehospital advanced life support
Full volunteer membership is only open to those who have trained or are training as YAS CFRs.
However, anyone is welcome to join us as a Supporter Member and attend a selection of our CPD events and other training sessions.
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