A VITAL life-saving service is calling on schools, clubs and youth groups to help keep their paramedics ‘life-saving ready’ by taking part in their new education campaign.

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance (HIOWAA) today launched their Learning Saves Lives initiative.

It costs the charity £6 per day to fund the training of one critical care paramedic over the course of a year.

With the help of four to 16-year-olds across the region, HIOWAA aims to raise £30,000, enough to train 15 of their paramedics.

The charity is encouraging schools and youth groups to raise funds by hosting non-uniform days and dress up days.

Rachel Leaman, HIOWAA director of fundraising, said: “Every day is a school day for our critical care paramedics and they need your help to allow them to keep learning. If a class of 30 pupils each donated £1, imagine what a difference that would make.”

Learning Saves Lives aims to engage young people with the many steps involved in becoming a critical care paramedic.

Joanna Hennessy, HIOWAA Education Programme Manager, said: “Our aim is to encourage young people to raise enough money to fund the ongoing training of our critical care paramedics, so they are always life-saving ready.

“At the same time, by educating young people about what it takes to become one of our paramedics, we could be looking at the next generation of life-savers.”

The launch of Learning Saves Lives follows the success of Save Up to Suit Up, which recently funded over thirty new flight suits for the charity. Over the past five years HIOWAA has been running education programmes which have reached over 80,000 youngsters across the region.

Schools and clubs interested in getting involved in Learning Saves Lives should visit the charity’s ‘Get Involved’ webpage at www.hiowaa.org, where they can find fundraising packs with interactive resources to help young people with their fundraising.