News campaign for defibrillators in sports centres

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The Evening News has joined the family of Jamie Skinner in launching the Shockingly Easy campaign.

With your help and the support of the Scottish Ambulance Service, we hope to ensure there is a life-saving defibrillator machine in every sports centre in the Lothians.

Find out what you can do to help.

Find out what you can do to help.

The terrible truth is that more than 600 apparently fit and healthy people under the age of 35 die in the UK every year from undiagnosed cardiac problems – and many of these deaths are easily preventable.

If you have a heart attack outside hospital, you are three times as likely to survive if one of these heart start machines is nearby and used to treat you quickly. Sadly, all too often that is not the case.

We want to make sure people in the Lothians – young and old – have the best chance of life. With your support, we can make a huge difference, by placing more of these machines throughout our communities.

We have very deliberately chosen to call the campaign Shockingly Easy because – despite the fact many people are a little scared to use the machines – they are in fact incredibly straightforward to use.

Basic CPR life-saving training is also vital, so we are hoping to encourage many more people to learn these critical skills too.

We also hope to establish an appropriate memorial project in Jamie’s home village in Nigeria and between five and ten per cent of total donations will be used to this end.

Here’s how you can help:

• Make a donation or fundraise for a defibrillator

Defibrillators cost around £2000 each, but any amount will help. Your local sports club can secure one at a discounted rate through the Shockingly Easy appeal. If you are organising a fundraiser, let us know so we can spread the word. Cheques payable to The Jamie Skinner Foundation can be sent to Shockingly Easy, The Edinburgh Evening News, Orchard Brae House, 30 Queensferry Road, EH4 2HS.

• Volunteer to take a defibrillator course at your sports club

The Scottish Ambulance Service will provide you with all the advice and support you need. If you already have a defibrillator, please let us know too, so you can be added to the ambulance services’ defibrillator map of the Lothians.

• Learn vital CPR skills

Sign up for a free class or volunteer to host one at your sports club.

If you can help by doing any of the above, or want to find out more, e-mail savealife@edinburghnews.com or call Paris Gourtsoyannis on 0131-248 2438.

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