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British Red Cross sends free 'party' first aid DVD to every secondary school in Britain

18 March 2013

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British Red Cross sends free ‘party’ first aid DVD to every secondary school in Britain

• Free DVD first aid lesson will be sent to 6000 secondary schools in Britain
• First aid advice centres on alcohol after Red Cross research shows drinking as major concern for teen age group
• 72% 15-18 year olds say they or their friends had drunk too much alcohol, with 39% of 11-14 saying same thing

The British Red Cross is sending a new, hard-hitting DVD resource which tackles issues around teenage drinking to every secondary school in the UK.

The DVD is based on realistic scenarios that teenagers find themselves in in order to break through the apathy and apprehension surrounding first aid learning.

Joe Mulligan, head of first aid education at the British Red Cross, said:
“It’s time to move first aid into the twenty-first century, to get away from the clinical image of first aid and show young people how and where these skills are relevant to their lives.”

“We devised this DVD after talking to young people about the situations they find themselves in. We all know that teenagers drink – that’s a fact. In a scenario like a house party, if there’s an accident it’s likely the first person on the scene will be another teenager. Knowing how to take action in a situation like this could save someone’s life.”

The British Red Cross asked 1000 11-18 year olds about situations they’d found themselves in where they had been at risk, and what kind of first aid advice they wanted to learn. Three quarters of 15-18 year olds said they, or their friends, had been in situations where they had drunk too much, yet only half felt confident they’d know what to do if someone collapsed from drinking.

Other situations young people identified as affecting them were:
• Being involved in a fight and drinking too much alcohol are issues relevant to more than  1 in 2 young people questioned
• One in seven 11-14yos, and more than a quarter of 15-18yos, said they or someone they knew had taken drugs
• 42% of young people said that they or someone they know have self-harmed in the past. Girls are more affected by the issue (49% vs 36% for boys).  But less than half of young people (42%) said they would be confident to help someone in this situation.
• Knife crime - 16%, or around 1 in 6 young people said they, or someone they knew, had been affected by knife crime.

The creation of the DVD is supported by the organisation Alcohol Concern, who recently conducted research into young people and binge drinking.

Tom Smith, Policy Programme Manager at Alcohol Concern said:
“Young people have told us cheap alcohol and the way it is promoted encourages binge drinking and that can lead to all sorts of problems. We want to support young people to make informed choices about alcohol and to keep safe when they do drink and this DVD is a simple and effective way to help with that.”

The DVD comes with teaching notes and is designed as a comprehensive lesson that anyone could use. In previous research, the British Red Cross found that 93% of parents and 83% teachers backed the teaching of first aid in schools, but 52% of PSHE teachers across the UK would not feel confident to teach first aid. Over a third of teachers felt their schools were ‘not geared up’ to teach the subject.

The British Red Cross have also launched their Pupil, Citizen, Lifesaver campaign to urge the government to put first aid and humanitarian education on the curriculum. For details go to

The DVD will be sent to every secondary school in the UK on 18th March 2013, but any interested groups can order the DVD via




Notes to editors

• The DVD will be sent to every secondary school in the UK on 18th March 2013.

• 1000 11-18 yr olds were interviewed for the research, which was undertaken to ascertain levels of knowledge, confidence and willingness amongst young people across various first aid skills; to find out what risky situations young people had found themselves in, and to find out what first aid they wanted to learn.

• For overall information about first aid for young people, go to or

• Alcohol Concern is the national charity on alcohol misuse for England and Wales, campaigning for effective alcohol policy and improved services for people whose lives are affected by alcohol-related problems.
• In November Alcohol Concern published a report  - ‘Binge - Drinking to get drunk: Influences on young adult drinking behaviours’  which looked at how drink promotions encourage excessive drinking and ‘pre-loading’ in young people. Read the report.
• Alcohol-related deaths account for around 25% of all deaths in young men aged between 15 and 29[i].

For more information on the British Red Cross please visit: or follow us on Twitter:

The British Red Cross helps people in crisis, whoever and wherever they are. We are part of a global voluntary network, responding to conflicts, natural disasters and individual emergencies. We enable vulnerable people in the UK and abroad to prepare for and withstand emergencies in their own communities. And when the crisis is over, we help them to recover and move on with their lives.