Schoolchildren get lifesaving lesson as Red Sky Foundation leads how-to session on defibrillators

The next generation have been given a lifesaving lesson thanks to a Sunderland charity and one of its supporters.

Friday, 16th July 2021, 1:10 pm

St Mary’s RC Primary School hosted a visit by firefighter Chris Smith who has raised funds for the Red Sky Foundation, and the charity’s leader Sergio Petrucci, who launched the fund with wife Emma after their daughter Luna was born with heart defects.

The foundation has funded a defibrillator for the school’s site, with its youngsters now clued up on what the kit is and how to use it and also shown how to do CPR thanks to training sessions led by the men.

Chris, 36, who is based at Sunderland Central Community Fire Station and lives in Ashbrooke, ran every day for 28 days to raise £2,000 for a defibrillator installed outside the Ivy House pub, and is continuing to support the charity’s work to set up as many as possible.

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Firefighter Chris Smith and Red Sky Foundation founder Sergio Petrucci visited St Mary's RC Primary School to show pupils how to do CPR and how a defibrillator works.

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The session was also deemed timely after the collapse of Denmark player Christian Eriksen during the Euro 2020 tournament last month as he had a cardiac arrest.

Chris, whose son Cillian, two, will attend the school, said: “Being a firefighter, I’ve used a defibrillator on many occasions to save lives, I’ve seen first hand how incredible they are.

"They drastically improve people’s chances and I really support the Red Sky Foundation’s ethos to get as many of them out there as possible.

St Mary's RC Primary School headteacher Martin Clephane and Red Sky Foundation founder Sergio Petrucci with the defibrillator unit on the outside of the school premises.

"We wanted to raise awareness about getting more defibrillators fitted and also give the pupils the confidence to use them.”

Among the parents to praise the pair was Lawrence Redmond, whose son Charlie took followed a session.

He said: “I thought this was great for the kids to learn such life saving skills.

"Thank you Sergio and the Red Sky Foundation for popping into St Mary’s and showing the kids the importance of CPR and how a to use a defib.”

Chris Smith and Red Sky Foundation founder Sergio Petrucci during one of the first aid sessions at St Mary's RC Primary School.

Andrea Walls-Liddle added: “As a parent, I was delighted to hear about the CPR education session being brought to my son’s primary school.

“I think sessions such as this are really important and The Red Sky Foundation were great at demonstrating practical skills to children in such an energising and engaging way.

“My son was eager to tell me what he’d learned as soon as I picked him up from school.”

Chris Smith and Sergio Petrucci spent the day at the school, passing on lifesaving skills.

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