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The Duke of Cambridge speaks to South Western Ambulance Service

12 March 2021

The Duke of Cambridge has spoken to South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) to hear about how South Western Ambulance Charity funding is making a difference throughout the region.

His Royal Highness called SWASFT Responder Manager, Robert Horton, who explained how grant funding from NHS Charities Together is enabling SWASFT to go the extra mile for its Community First Responder (CRF) volunteers across the South West.

The Duke also spoke with colleagues from seven other NHS trusts on Tuesday 9 March in his role as Patron of NHS Charities Together.

Robert said: “It was an absolute honour to showcase the amazing team of CFR volunteers, and the way South Western Ambulance Charity and NHS Charities Together support our initiatives.”

CFRs are volunteers operating on behalf of SWASFT within the predominantly remote and rural communities in which they live or work. They are dispatched to 999 emergency incidents where every second counts, and administer basic life support until an ambulance crew arrive. These include incidents when someone isn’t breathing, has chest pain, or is unconscious or fitting.

Robert added: “Attending around 40,000 incidents each year, our CFRs really do save lives, reduce pain, prevent or reduce hospital stays, and provide reassurance to those requiring emergency care.”

CFRs have also recently helped to support SWASFT colleagues at hospital emergency departments across the South West by giving them hot drinks and other light refreshments.

Notes to editors:

  1. NHS Charities Together is the national membership organisation for NHS Charities representing, championing and supporting the work of more than 140 member charities, including South Western Ambulance Charity.
  2. Captain Sir Tom Moore directly raised £33 million for NHS Charities Together’s Covid-19 appeal.

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South Western Ambulance Charity

The South Western Ambulance Charity, founded in 1995, uses gifted monies to benefit those in our communities who use our service and to improve the welfare of the staff and volunteers of the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust. 

Our charitable support covers Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire including Bristol and Swindon.

If you would like to show your appreciation for the care that you or your loved one has received from us in the form of a charitable donation please visit our online giving website: Donate to South Western Ambulance Charity | Give as you Live Donate