Sergio Petrucci, founder of the Red Sky Foundation, said his organisation plans to put in place four defibrillator devices in Boldon and Cleadon, following on from the local campaign’s fundraising success.
“The community of East Boldon raised close to £5,000 to fund four defibrillators,” Mr Petrucci said.
"They are going to go into the Post Office on the Front Street of East Boldon, one outside the pharmacy in Cleadon, next to Romano’s, and then another two will be going in at Boldon Colliery and West Boldon.”
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Just last month, the organisation helped install a new defibrillator at a public park in South Shields, with the help of a borough councillor and various community health groups in the area.
Borough councillor for Westoe, Glenn Thompson, said the Red Sky Foundation’s work had been ‘key’ in making the potentially life-saving device available to the local community.
“The North East heart charity, The Red Sky Foundation has been key in the whole process,” Cllr Thompson said.
"Mr Petrucci has offered to support any other interested groups in South Tyneside...already other park friends groups have shown interest and the hope is this relationship with The Red Sky Foundation can lead to further coverage throughout the borough.”
Between April 2018 and November 2019, there were 5,710 recorded sudden cardiac arrests across the North East. Bystander CPR was provided in only 1,614 of those cases and just 285 of those people survived to later be discharged from hospital.
Mr Petrucci also said: “South Tyneside has a relatively low level of defibrillator coverage in comparison with neighbouring boroughs.
"It’s quite alarming, really. Recently, I asked a Chief Executive of a motor dealer about defibrillators in the dealership and he said it ‘wasn’t a high priority’ for them.
"I thought to myself, ‘I’m sure he’s got at least two battery packs to restart a car that’s flat, but nothing to restart a heart’.
"Ultimately, what I’d like to do is get more communities in touch so we can work together and get more defibrillators about in public areas. Along with getting more devices in workplaces, that’s my ultimate goal.”