Brampton resident, Farrah Humphrey, won a nationwide #savealifeselfie contest held by St. John Ambulance (SJA) and donated the prize, an automated external defibrillator (AED), to her local former school.
Farrah Humphrey knows how important automated external defibrillators are from her training as a Youth Leadership team member and Medical First Responder at St. John Ambulance. When she found out about the #savealifeselfie contest, sponsored by SJA’s Alberta Council, it was only natural for her to pick up the defibrillator while on volunteer first aid duty at a public event and send in a selfie photo.
On December 1st, Farrah found out she was one of two national winners. Farrah knew exactly what she wanted to do with it – donate it to a school that held a special place in her heart.
Farrah attended Rowntree Montessori Schools in Brampton for over 10 years and has many fond memories of her time there. Owners, Mark and Tina Essaye, had applied for AED sponsorship but their request was denied due to their private school status. Unfortunately, there was no room in their budget to accommodate an AED purchase, so when they heard about Farrah’s donation, they were both thrilled. “We are so excited about this donation. Not only does this add an important piece of technology to our health and safety program but we are so touched that Farrah’s experience with us would lead her to think of donating such a wonderful gift to our school community” said Mark Essaye, Director of Administration.
Farrah joined the St. John Ambulance Youth Leadership team three years ago and has evolved into an amazing volunteer. St. John Ambulance is proud that its youth program fosters a sense of community responsibility and Farrah’s donation is proof of it. The Peel Dufferin Branch has also generously donated AED orientation training to the staff of Rowntree Montessori to complement Farrah’s gift”, confirmed Dianne Rende, Executive Director.
AEDs are valuable devices in any enviornment: the earlier an AED is applied and defibrillation occurs, the greater the chance of a successful outcome. Statistics show use of an AED can increase the odds of survival by up to 75%.
The purpose of the contest was to draw attention to the new national database registry for AEDs. In November 2016, St. John Ambulance, Alberta Council released Save a Life, an AED locator application for Apple and Android devices to assist the public in accessing their closest registered AED. To raise awareness of this important tool and the importance of AEDs during CPR month St. John Ambulance in partnership with Zoll and Philips held the #savealifeselfie contest. Entrants from across Canada were encouraged to submit selfies with AEDs to be entered into a random draw. Of the multitude of entries from across Canada the two winners are Kay Riddell-Poole from Grande Prairie, Alberta and Farrah Humphrey from Brampton, Ontario. It only takes a few minutes to register an AED. With the launch of the Save a Life app, finding registered AEDs can be done on mobile devices within seconds.