SUPERMARKET shoppers can pick up some life-saving skills along with their groceries as a first aid group offers free classes.
Mum Aid First Aid has set up a free workshop in Tesco in Quay Street, Fareham, offering first aid training for children and families, as well as teaching people how to operate defibrillators.
The scheme, which will be held in the store’s community room, has been set up by Gosport businessman Richard Reynolds.
Mr Reynolds said he was inspired to act after reading about The News’ Heartbeat campaign to double the number of public defibrillators installed across the area.
Mr Reynolds, of Heritage Way, said: ‘I saw the campaign and I thought “why not create a group so if people see a child or an adult in trouble they will feel confident enough to use a defibrillator?”.’
Fareham MP Suella Fernandes and borough council leader Sean Woodward visited the group to see what it had planned and met mum Helen Coumidis, whose 10-month-old son Robert has two holes in his heart.
Helen, 21, from Southsea, said she supports the scheme.
‘It gives me more confidence to know there are people who could help,’ she said.
Miss Fernandes said: ‘This is a brilliant example of people taking the initiative and devising a service.
‘Personally, I would not know what to do to resuscitate a child or baby who was in trouble and I think this training is valuable for every body.’
Cllr Woodward added: ‘It is so important that people know how to resuscitate their children.
‘If something happens it needs to be instinctive as panic will set in. It is someone’s response in those vital seconds that could literally mean life or death, so this course is incredibly valuable.’
Tesco’s community champion Kari Pratt said she was only too happy to host the class in their dedicated community room for free.
The first workshop took place on Saturday, September 19 at 1pm. Everyone who attends will get a certificate of attendance.
Mum Aid First Aid also offers classes at The Coach House, in Fareham Road, Gosport, every Wednesday at 7pm. For more information visit mumaidfirstaid.com.