Ahipara School wins defibrillator
Ahipara School has won a defibrillator, a life-saving device used to resuscitate victims of a cardiac arrest.
Ahipara local Lisa Merlo entered the school in the Become a Heart Saver competition run by company Heart Saver.
‘‘We are super excited to have this for our community and for the thousands of tourists we have visit every year,’’ Merlo says.
‘‘Our fire brigade and surf rescue have limited resources for the huge area they cover so it is fantastic to have a very important resource like an AED [automated external defibrillator] available for our people. We will keep it in the school office.’’
The Ahipara School, with 240 students, is a hub for the small community around 14km, west of Kaitaia, with people having to drive past on their way into and out of the town. Heart Saver began after managing director (and volunteer firefighter for 20 years) Mike Mander saw a need for more defibrillators to be readily available in communities.
The business is giving away an AED every month in 2017 to nonproft organisations and charity groups. AEDs are portable and designed so even children could save the life of someone experiencing a heart attack.
The use of an AED within three to five minutes of collapse can increase the chance of survival by up to 40 per cent.