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2023 Community Programs Update: For the Service of Humanity

As the year draws to a close, St John Ambulance Victoria takes immense pride in looking back on the remarkable journey we've undertaken alongside our dedicated team, cherished customers and diverse community. 2023 has been a testament to our unwavering commitment to providing exceptional patient care, fostering innovation, and extending our reach to serve more communities than ever before.  

While the year is not yet over and there will be more to report in early 2024, here is a summary of just some of our programs and services.  

Defib in Your Street: Expanding into New Areas 

This year we completed our Reservoir deployment, where we have installed 15 defibrillators and trained 4,074 people in free CPR. In 2023, Defib In Your Street has won 2 awards, including the We are Brimbank Community Engagement Award as it expanded into its second destination - postcode 3021 which includes St Albans, Kealba, Kings Park and Albanvale 

First Aid in Schools: Climbing Numbers 

They say to ‘teach them while they are young’, and St John believes that First Aid is no exception. We have taught 87,957 students in free First Aid this year through our First Aid in Schools program ranging from Mildura to Portland to Paynesville and everywhere in between. This also expands into our Party Ready program targeted at older students in safety at social gatherings.   

CPR Lab: A Full Year of Events

Our CPR Lab has also made outstanding progress this year having trained over 10,500 in crucial CPR awareness for free. In just 10 minutes a member of the public can learn CPR awareness and practice on manikins which provide live feedback. We have been privileged enough to attend some major events including The Grand Prix which yielded 900 participants over 4 days, Frankston Waterfront Festival achieving 774 people trained in 2 days, and finally Maroondah Festival which did an outstanding 698 people in 1 day. 

Community Transport: Driving Care   

Throughout this year, community transport services have reached new heights, travelling 33,000kms over the year across Melbourne ensuring timely, safe and compassionate transport to vulnerable individuals. Our Community Transport crew made over 1,830 trips for a loyal 245 customers – that is an average of over 7 trips per person. 'It's been a life saver for me' - St John's Community Transport service is essential to many across Victoria. Hear what Andrea has to say:

My first contact was with Daniel via telephone. He was a lovely welcoming person who made me feel like nothing was too much trouble. My second contact was with your driver, Mo (Mohammed). Not only was he an excellent driver, but again, nothing was too much trouble and he even opened (and closed) my door. He was open to having a conversation to and from the destination and was overall, just a genuine, kind, caring and pleasant person. “An Angel” I suggested to him. Thank you very much to your organisation for assisting me. Please pass on my thanks and appreciation to management and to Mo (Mohammed). He is an exceptional and rare, person.

Volunteering: Selfless Contributions 

Volunteers are the lifeblood of St John, and 2023 was no exception. Collectively, our volunteers gave over 147,000 hours of their time to the community at events, training and in emergencies.  

Gifted Equipment and Training

Our Shocktober competition saw much involvement from our community. St John gifted 5 defibrillators to worthy organisations along with others receiving First Aid Kits, Mental health training, and DRSABCD e-learning.  

Female Accessible CPR Training 

In light of World First Aid Day 2023, St John did a survey and discovered that not all members of our community had equal access to knowledge, skills, and confidence of First Aid. 63% of women are not confident offering first aid during a health or medical emergency, compared to 43% of men. To help tackle these statistics, St John offered free CPR classes for 120 women on the 9th September featuring female trainers to nurture a safe and welcoming environment.  

Finishing this article here is a challenge, as this is by no means an exhaustive list of every impact and service delivered in 2023. Please watch out for more from us in early 2024 about Non-Emergency Patient Transport, First Aid Training, Event Health Services, the Youth Program and so much more.  

As we eagerly anticipate the opportunities that the new year brings, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to each individual who has contributed to our journey this year. Together, we've achieved incredible milestones, and with our shared commitment, we're able to continue positively impacting the lives of those we serve. 
From all of us at St John Ambulance, we wish you a joyous Christmas and a prosperous new year filled with health and happiness. 
Thank you for being an integral part of our 2023 impact story. If you can spare a donation at this time to help us continue delivering these community programs in 2024, please visit this page.

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