Tuesday 14th October 2014 – 12.15pm – Claire Brown.
School children from Birmingham ended up at the scene of a road traffic collision last week but, thankfully, it was just a new scenario at the indoor educational village at Safeside.
Year five pupils from Cotteridge Junior and Infant School visited West Midlands Fire Service’s Safeside facility in the City’s Eastside on Wednesday 8th October for a day of interactive learning. The educational village consists of a realistic full size street which includes a complete with shops, toucan crossing, double decker bus, car, canal, house, train and more.
The villages’ newest edition is thanks to West Midlands Ambulance Service who has provided Safeside with a fully functional ambulance to enhance the road safety scenarios and enable children to familiarise themselves with the ins and outs of what’s on board.
Andy Jeynes, the Trust’s Community Response Manager for Birmingham and the Black Country, said: “The village at Safeside is a remarkable facility which enables youngsters to experience scenarios in almost real-life settings. We’re really happy to be able to support this educational facility with the addition of an ambulance which is complete with medical equipment, a realistic ‘patient’ and of course lights and sirens which are always popular with children.
“As a Trust we are passionate about engaging with youngsters about the role of the ambulance service and when it’s appropriate to dial 999. We hope that if children have an opportunity to jump in the back of an ambulance in a friendly setting, like Safeside, they will be less frightened and apprehensive if they’re ever unfortunate enough to need our help.”
Rob Hattersley, Safeside Manager, said: “The ambulance is a fantastic addition to the street scene, bringing learning to life for our visitors. After covering the causes of distraction to pedestrians at our working toucan crossing, such as smartphones or music, visitors can see inside the ambulance and understand the potential consequences of a lack of attention.
“We’ve been delighted at the support we’ve had from our partners at the ambulance service. It’s been useful to review our scripts to ensure key messages are getting through, for example about correct use of 999, and we’re delighted with the provision of our new ambulance. It’s demonstrated the importance of seeing Safeside as a partnership project between different agencies all with the aim of Making West Midlands Safer.”
Emma Wilkins, the Trust’s Head of Community Response, said: “This is a fantastic example of partnership working with West Midlands Fire Service which is helping us to engage with young people and build awareness about road safety and the ambulance service.”
Notes to Editor:
Safeside has developed programmes geared towards primary and secondary pupils, over 16s, parents and carers of under-fives and children and adults with special needs. Visit organiser can find out more and book visits to Safeside at www.safeside.org.uk.
Pictured right (left to right): Andy Jeynes, Rob Hattersley and Emma Wilkins in front of the new addition at Safeside.