Tuesday 3rd November 2015 – 2.40pm – Claire Brown.
A Birmingham paramedic swapped patients for pupils last month as he embarked on a mission to teach first aid to schools in India.
Sam Duplessis Grimson, 24 from Erdington ambulance hub, joined six other ambulance and fire colleagues from across the UK to embark on a three-week mission to teach students in Jamshedpur basic first aid and CPR.
The team departed on Tuesday 29th September and touched down in Delhi before heading to Calcutta to jump on a train for the remainder of the journey to Jamshedpur. When the team arrived at St Mary’s English School they went straight to work teaching students from St Mary’s and other neighbouring schools in blistering 30 degree heat. Over the course of the three weeks, the team ran several courses in basic first aid which included bandaging skills, dealing with patients fitting and CPR.
Sam said: “Education like this isn’t provided in India due to a lack of clinical staff and money. With no ambulance service or National Health Service, basic medical treatment in hospitals is expensive and, for some, they simply cannot afford it which is why we decided to help make a small difference.”
Before Sam and the team left for India they each raised money through charity events to help pay for training mannequins, first aid books and medical kits. Each school who took part in the training were given a kit so that they could pass on their newly acquired skills to other local communities.
Sam continued: “We were so surprised at the enthusiasm of the classes and their hunger to learn, alternating between students and teachers from local schools in the area, everyone was ready to get stuck in! News of our classes quickly spread and soon the whole city wanted to join our workshop. It was a real honour to teach something so close to my heart to people who have a real need. Thank you to everyone who donated money, it really did make a difference. We’re keen to return again soon to do it all over again!”