How donations to our Cascade grants programme are helping medical students to save lives

Imagine you have severe chest pains. A friend calls for an ambulance but every second feels like an hour. You black out. You regain conciousness and discover that University student volunteers have saved your life before the ambulance has arrived.

It's a horrible situation, but not an infrequent one. In the first half of this year, five patients have been successfully resuscitated by student volunteers. The students are part of the Community First Responders project that's been running since 2014. 

The Community First Responders are a group of approximately 40 trained University of Nottingham student volunteers who act as an additional resource to the East Midlands Ambulance Service. They can be tasked to 999 calls anywhere in the East Midlands and have attended over 3,000 incidents over the last four years. Often arriving before the ambulance, the volunteers provide vital emergency care and have a real impact on the lives of people in the local community.

Thanks to generous donations to the Cascade grants programme, Community First Responders have been able to lease two new vehicles to continue saving lives over the next three years.

Rachel Groome

Rachel Groome, 5th year medical student and Operations Lead from Community First Responders said: “The lease of the new vehicles has been a huge goal for us and we are extremely happy to have achieved this. Securing the cars allows our volunteers to continue supporting our community over the next three years.

"Being part of this project has given me experience in assessing acutely unwell patients, so when I'm in a hospital setting I have a greater understanding of what needs to be done. I've seen a huge variety of patients, from minor injuries to cardiac arrests, it's made me more prepared for those stressful situations. It's not something a lot of medical students get to do."

Find out more about the Community First Responders or discover how you can help our students to excel out of the classroom with Cascade.