Valley’s St. John Ambulance needs first responders

Members are trained as advanced medical first responders with CPR for health care professionals.

St. John Ambulance is currently recruiting volunteers for the Medical First Responder Division. An open house is being held on Thursday, Oct. 29 at 6:30 p.m. at the St. John Training Centre at 158 Craig St.

What’s it all about? Some disasters strike all at once and grab your attention. Other disasters are smaller and not so newsworthy. The St. John Ambulance First Responder Division usually looks after the latter. At sporting events, public events, fairs and concerts, people with injuries and illnesses are treated by our advanced medical first response volunteers.

Members are trained as advanced medical first responders with CPR for health care professionals. A two-day standard first aid course is prerequisite and anyone with OFA3 can challenge the course. There is a reciprocity agreement for certified paramedics. All St. John Ambulance volunteers are covered by a national insurance policy.

This dedicated group provides patient care at many community events in the Cowichan Valley. They normally cover about 30 public duties per year and as a group will give more than 2,500 hours of volunteer time to our community. The program will give you the opportunity to volunteer in the community as well as train you in advanced first aid. The division is small but well equipped, including a mobile first aid post vehicle.

If you are 18 or older and interested in volunteering in the community, St. John First Responders might be for you. It requires a minimum of 60 hours annually of volunteer time and a criminal record check.

Started in 1996, the Cowichan Valley First Responder Division follows a long tradition of helping people. The Order of St. John started more than 950 years ago. It is the oldest charitable organization in the world and began with giving aid to pilgrims during the Crusades. Our volunteers are part of a worldwide organization found in 22 countries.