The provision of automated external defibrillators (AEDs), supplied by Safelincs, across its region, has helped Berkshire council, Bracknell Forest, win the Public Sector Organisation of the Year Award in the annual Heart Safe Awards.
The council operates a Members Initiative Fund that allows Bracknell Forest councillors to spend up to £15,000, within their wards, supporting local groups and projects that make a difference to their local community. Councillors canvassed local opinion and found there was a requirement for AEDs – devices that can stabilise the heart rhythms of a person having a cardiac arrest. They enable lay responders or bystanders to use them successfully with little or no training.
Safelincs has now installed over 50 of these devices in public areas such as community centres, schools and small retailers – notably those that have a post office counter. These are delivered together with cabinets where required. Such has been the success of the project that a neighbouring council is looking at adopting a similar scheme.