St John Ambulance Double award for sharing first aid message

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St John Ambulance won two prestigious, yet very different, awards for promoting life saving skills as the country’s leading first aid charity.

One of the charity’s youth programmes, RISE (respect, inspire, support, empower), won The Partnership Working award at the Children and Young People Now Awards.

RISE partnered with the Jimmy Mizen Foundation’s Release the Peace project that encourages school children to perform positive actions in their communities as a means to break the cycle of anger breeding anger.   The project has reached nearly 2,000 school children, giving them life saving first aid skills and learning the consequences of street violence.

At the heart of the program are Margaret Mizen and Grace Idowu, who both lost their sons in violent crimes in 2008. The mothers take turns speaking at schools, encouraging young people to choose positive outlets for their stress, such as learning first aid, rather than turning to a life of street crime.

In its first year, the programme has inspired the many of the children to ‘release the peace’ in their communities by organising a peaceful march, writing poetry, doing artwork and performing drama sessions at their school assemblies.

Wendy Human, Director of Charitable Initiatives and Training said: ‘This award recognises the value of working with children at an early age to steer them away from a life of street crime. I am immensely proud of the team involved in this partnership.’

The programme has been given funding by the Youth United Foundation to continue in 2014.

Third PR award for Helpless

St John Ambulance’s Helpless brand campaign topped the Best Use of Broadcast category of CorpComms magazine’s annual awards ceremony.

The judging panel deemed Helpless the winner, because of its hard-hitting plot that was seen as a great consumer story for broadcast. The campaign’s TV ad aired during Downton Abbey, and captured much media attention.

The campaign gave 57,000 people access to first aid skills and at least 4 lives were directly saved from the campaign’s reach. One person was saved because of first aid advice given on Daybreak’s coverage of the campaign. Awareness for the importance of first aid encouraged 738 people book training courses.   The 2012 campaign was built from the statistic that 140,000 people die each year in situations where first aid could have given them a chance to live – the same as the amount who die from cancer.

Sarah Jafar, PR Manager, said the awards record for the campaign speaks for itself: ‘We’re absolutely delighted that Helpless won its third award. Our peers in the PR industry, and the public, are taking notice of the great work we do at SJA. It’s something to be very proud of.’

‘Ultimately the campaign has lead more people to learn first aid to be the difference between life and death, which is the greatest achievement of all.’   This is the third major PR industry award the Helpless campaign has won. Previously the team accepted PR Week’s Not for Profit Campaign award, and won the same category of Best Broadcast Campaign from the CIPR Excellence Awards.

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