28th August 2018
Three local sports clubs create heartsafe environment
Three local sports clubs have joined the growing number of grassroots organisations working with local charity The Joe Humphries Memorial Trust to become ‘heartsafe’.
Kegworth Town Cricket Club, Kibworth Cricket Club and Kirby Muxloe Sports Club have all invested in defibrillators and had CPR training with the support of the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust (JHMT). Financial assistance has come from JHMT and the Everards Leicestershire and Rutland Cricket League.
Last year, the Everards Leicestershire and Rutland Cricket League’s premier division made it a league requirement for all premier league clubs to sign up to the Leicestershire and Rutland Heart Awareness in Cricket (HAC) partnership. As part of the requirements, all clubs must have a defibrillator at their grounds and provide CPR and defibrillator training for the membership of each club, including players, coaches and officials.
The HAC programme has recently received a further boost, with two more premier league clubs – Kegworth and Kibworth – becoming heartsafe.
In Kegworth, the cricket club has a new defibrillator on the front of the clubhouse, where it is available for public use 24-7.
Keith Tongue from Kegworth Town Cricket Club said: “The Trust has been very good, clearly explaining how the process works with getting a new defib. We have recently undertaken two hours of training on the usage of the defib, run by the Trust.
“Several comments have been received from club members and coaches saying they feel reassured that such a tool is available. We currently have 40 juniors in the club ranging from six years to under-17s, plus around 60 adult members.”
The club has three Saturday teams playing in the Everards League, with the first team doing very well in the top flight.
Over at Kibworth, the JHMT has provided free CPR and defibrillator awareness training for around 20 members, supporting them with the installation of their new clubhouse defibrillator.
Russell Spiers, who organised the project, said: “I think everyone at the club is pleased to have a defibrillator on site. In total, we have more than 350 members, ranging from four-year olds to 84-year-olds.
“Getting a defibrillator is something that we have been planning to do for a couple of years, but the prompt from the Trust and the Everards Premier League got us over the line.”
Kirby Muxloe Sports Club is a multi-sports club, with archery, cricket and football sections covering all junior and senior age groups. It has around 325 junior and 250 senior members.
The club’s new defib is situated outside the main entrance to the sports club, where it is easily accessible by both club members and the wider community.
Nigel Wain from Kirby Muxloe Sports Club said: “The JHMT has been very helpful throughout the project. They came in to do the original training, facilitated a very competitive discounted price for the defib and also funded the cabinet. Our sports club members, coaches and players are very supportive of our new defib. This is a must for multi-sports club like ours.”
The JHMT was set up after the tragic death of Rothley teenager Joe Humphries, aged just 14, from sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (SADS), while he was out on a training run.
The charity campaigns tirelessly for greater awareness of SADS and sudden heart deaths, and helps grassroots sports clubs to get the equipment and training they need to help save a life. The principles of the charity include mandatory CPR training as part of the support of providing a defibrillator.
The JHMT also runs the Inspire Awards, a small grants scheme that supports young people to fulfill their ambitions in sports, art, community work or entrepreneurism.
Steve Humphries, chair of the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust, said: “We are delighted by the efforts of all those clubs who have been working alongside JHMT to help create a heartsafe sporting and community environment. This will also give added reassurance to parents of young people that these clubs are better prepared should the worst happen and someone falls victim to a cardiac arrest.
“All of these clubs play in the Everard’s Leicestershire and Rutland cricket league, where almost every club in the premier league now has a defib. We hope this will inspire other clubs in the Everard’s League and those across the wider sporting family in the city and county to take the necessary steps to bring about this level of heartsafe excellence and practice.”
Andy Hibberd, Leicestershire County Cricket development officer for clubs and leagues, said: “I’d like to congratulate Kibworth, Kegworth and Kirby Muxloe for leading the way in the Heart Awareness in Cricket project.
“Whilst these clubs are great examples of what can be achieved, there is still lots of work to do to ensure the Everard’s Leicestershire and Rutland Cricket League is a heartsafe league. Clubs which are interested in becoming heartsafe should not feel alone, there is a raft of support available including funding, procurement and training, so please do not hesitate to get in touch.”
A cardiac emergency can happen to anyone of any age, including seemingly fit and healthy young people taking part in physical activity. The physical exertion of sport can sometimes trigger underlying heart conditions like SADS.
Access to a defibrillator within eight minutes – and someone who knows CPR – will drastically increase a victim’s chances of survival.
* To find out more about the work of the Trust, apply for training and support, or to help out with the charity’s work, visit the website at www.jhmt.org.uk. You can also follow the Trust on Facebook at facebook.com/JHMTorguk and Twitter @JHMTorguk.