accessibility & help

More than half of young people lack confidence to perform first aid, says British Red Cross survey


For further information Henry Makiwa
Contact number 02078777479 or Out of office hours pager: 07659 145095

More than half of the UK’s young people lack confidence to perform first aid in an emergency situation, according to a new research published today by the British Red Cross.

The Red Cross survey shows that 56 per cent of young people between the ages of 16-24 years are under confident in their first aid skills and are worried about getting something wrong.
"We appreciate that first aid can seem daunting, but actually fears about getting something wrong are unfounded. It is better to do something than nothing, certainly in the most serious cases. We need to make first aid less intimidating and more accessible”. Liz Brunwin, the Red Cross Life. Live it. project manager said.

“One of the best ways we can increase confidence in first aid is to teach children and young people these skills at school. In schools across the country, our Life. Live it programme is equipping teachers with the resources they need to teach students life-saving skills and build a generation of life savers."
When young people are given the opportunity to learn first aid, the results speak for themselves. 17-year-old martial arts fanatic, Chris Jefferies, has been a First Aid volunteer for the British Red Cross for the past two years and has even saved a friend’s life after an accident in the gym.

He said, “I have performed first aid on friends as well as people I met during my first aid duties. This has ranged from small cuts, burns and resuscitation.

“The most important incident for me was when I helped my friend who had injured his spine while sparring in the gym,” the GCE Advanced Level student added.

The Red Cross survey of young adults was part of a wider survey detailing first aid knowledge across the country to mark the World First Aid Day on 12 September 2009.

To celebrate World First Aid Day, the Red Cross are offering schools and colleges a free poster that shows how to deal with severe bleeding. This is part of a set of 7 first aid posters produced to build young people’s knowledge. A new film showcasing first aid in the classroom is also being launched to inspire teachers. These resources are accessible on the Red Cross website:


Notes to editors
For first aid tips, photos, materials and spokespeople, please contact Henry Makiwa on 02078777479 or

Free gifts for schools on World First Aid Day It’s World First Aid Day on 12 September – and to celebrate we’re offering a range of tempting first aid freebies to schools, colleges and youth organisations.

Free first aid poster - that shows how to deal with severe bleeding injuries. It’s just one example from a set of seven posters produced to build up young people’s first aid knowledge. Offer is valid for September only– so order now from our online shop:
Free lesson plans - the Red Cross is also offering two free lesson plans, which give a taste of how our Life. Live it. First aid education kit works. You can either download these directly or order a sample CD-ROM.

Plus watch our new video for teachers to find out just how easy teaching first aid in the classroom can be. This can be found at

Pupils at Sir Graham Balfour School, in Stafford, start the new school year by demonstrating vital life-saving skills learned through the British Red Cross. When they start the new term next week, appropriately enough on 9/9/9, a group of students will be challenged to treat ‘injured’ people during a first aid scenario set up at the school in the run-up to World First Aid Day (September 12). For photocalls, interviews, and spokespeople please contact Rebecca McIlhone - 0117 3012624 / 07921 494437 (

The British Red Cross works worldwide to discover the fate of those missing as a result of war or disaster and, where possible, to restore contact between them and their families. Through the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, the British Red Cross is able to help trace these missing family members by sending information given to us by relatives in the UK to the International Committee of the Red Cross or to the relevant National Red Cross or Red Crescent Society overseas. This information is then used to search for missing family members. In addition the British Red Cross helps families stay in touch when normal means of communication have broken down because of conflict or disaster through the exchange of family news in Red Cross messages.