Sea Cadet life saving skills used to help child

First Aid training is a core skill taught to all sea cadets. Petty Officer (SCC) Keith Jeffery, the officer-in-charge of Castleford Sea Cadets, talks of the value of learning such life-saving skills.

I prepared to go to my friend’s wedding in Bradford on December 29. She was getting married at her local mosque and was having a reception that evening at 7pm.

As there was a chance it might go on late, prepared my rucksack with clothes to stop at a friend’s house.

I noticed my first aid kit was still in there and decided that you never know what might happen so it’s best to take it with me.

These are the skills that I have developed within the cadet forces that I did not have five years ago.

Petty Officer Keith Jeffery

I arrived in Bradford with 50 minutes to spare so decided to walk the mile to the venue instead of taking a taxi.

As I got closer to the venue, I heard screams. I found four men attacking a child. As I approached the scene the four men ran away.

My first aid training immediately kicked in and I remembered I had packed my first aid kit, freshly restocked with latex gloves.

I put them on started to check him over looking for any wounds whilst asking him for his details and making sure he was not on any blood-thinning medication. Another passer by approached and called for an ambulance and the police.

He handed me his phone so I could describe the condition of the young lad to the ambulance service.

I sat the lad down on my rucksack and held him upright as I was worried if he lay down he might go unconscious and increase pressure to his head wounds.

I continued to check him over whilst looking into his eyes and checking his responses to questions for signs of possible brain injury.

The police arrived and relieved me as the first aider. They took over whilst I stayed with the lad and continued to check for other signs of injury whilst waiting for further support to arrive.

Thankfully the lad survived his ordeal. I have no idea what would have happened if I wasn’t passing or how well it would have gone if I did not think to bring my rucksack and first aid kit.

I know that my first aid training had prepared me for that night, communication skills had enabled me take charge of the situation and leadership skills had enabled me to be there at the right time with the equipment ready to act.

These are the skills that I have developed within the cadet forces that I did not have five years ago.

First aid training for Sea Cadets is accredited by St John Ambulance, and is taught to junior cadets and cadets first class.

From the age of 16, cadets can undertake a first aid at work qualification.

First aid is also a pre-requisite skill for sea cadet instructors.