Knowing first aid helped Scarlett save her father’s life

It was a peaceful day in Gloucester. Richard was working out in his home gym. His daughter Scarlett and her friend were hanging out in the living room.

But when Richard became unresponsive and stopped breathing, Scarlett used the first aid skills her dad had taught her to save his life.

“I complained to Scarlett about feeling ill. She offered to fetch me a glass of water so I went upstairs to lie down,” Richard said.

“When she returned, I’d collapsed on the bed and I wasn’t breathing. She said my face had turned blue.”

Luckily, Richard and his wife are both paramedics. They knew the importance of first aid and taught Scarlett how to do chest compressions when she was young.

“Scarlett began by moving me off the bed and tilting my head back to clear my airway.

“After looking, listening and feeling for breath, she called 999. An operator helped her by counting out a rhythm for her to perform chest compressions.

“I was rushed to a hospital in Bristol where I lay in a coma for the next six days. It was terrifying for the family.

“But I woke up six days later and I was up and about in a matter of weeks. It was a pretty impressive recovery.

“Words can’t describe how proud I am of Scarlett. It’s one thing to learn these skills and another to put them into action. She’s grown into a truly remarkable person.”

Now all children in England will have the chance to learn first aid

Most people consider first aid a vital life skill.

But recently, the British Red Cross asked school children across England how they would help someone who had become unresponsive or stopped breathing.*

Almost a quarter of children had experienced a situation where someone needed first aid, but most felt helpless to act. We want to change that.

After ten years of campaigning from the British Red Cross and other organisations, school children across England will learn lifesaving skills as part of the school curriculum.

Nine out of ten children agreed that learning first aid skills would make them feel more confident to help in an emergency. We believe these skills will empower young people and help to create a new generation of lifesavers.