LIFE SAVERS: Some of the Glenreagh Heart-Start team with their vehicle at the new shed which will be opened on Saturday.
LIFE SAVERS: Some of the Glenreagh Heart-Start team with their vehicle at the new shed which will be opened on Saturday. Contributed

Heart-Start home set to open

THE opening of a shed might not seem like a big deal, but at Glenreagh it will be cause for huge celebrations this Saturday.

The shed in question will be the home to the life saving Glenreagh Heart-Start initiative.

Begun in 2001 by retired ambulance officer Geoff Hicks, the program has proven the difference between life and death on many occasions due to the fact that it can take up to 45 minutes for emergency help from either Coffs Harbour or Grafton to reach people in cardiac distress in the Glenreagh and Nana Glen areas.

Mr Hicks’ initial thought for a first-aid post in Glenreagh housing a defibrillator has developed as the Heart-Start program and has proven it’s merit time and time again.

It now involves similar groups at Nana Glen and Coramba and the purchase last year of a purpose equipped vehicle, ready to roll at a moment’s notice.

The shed is the next big step for the group.

It will be used to store the Heart-Start vehicle and for training.

The team is supported by The Ambulance Service of NSW, which assists with training, first- aid supplies and oxygen, however fundraising to support the team to supply and maintain equipment and run the service is ongoing.

“The phone system alone costs us $1600 a year,” Mr Hicks said.

“We work hard raising funds and we are extremely grateful to all those people who have donated generously of their time and money.”

The new shed will be opened by Steve Cansdell MP at 11am on Saturday. The Glenreagh HeartStart NSW Ambulance First Responders Team is hoping for a big community turnout.



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