Councillors have agreed to roll out a programme providing life-saving equipment and emergency life-support training to schools across the Western Isles. 

The Comhairle is the first local authority in Scotland to introduce Emergency Life Support onto the Curriculum for Excellence.

The Education and Children’s Services Committee agreed to grant £30k toward the Lucky2BHere project which will see defribillators installed and training provided at all schools in the Western Isles.

Cllr Catriona Stewart, Chair of Education and Children’s Services, said: “Schools play a vital part in communities and this equipment and training will add to the resilience of those communities.

"There are defribillators at a number of locations across the islands including some schools where the pupils have been very enthusiastic about the scheme.

"However this programme will increase that provision so that all schools have the equipment and training. Importantly the aim is to have the equipment on the outside of school buildings so that it is available for community use at any time.”

Lucky2BHere was established by Ross Cowie in December 2009 after he suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. His life was saved due to an ambulance being nearby with skilled crew and the life saving equipment that they carried. Ross said: “Lucky2BHere has been lobbying for Emergency Life Support to be on the Curriculum for Excellence for a number of years. For the Western Isles Schools to do so and to be the first in Scotland to do so, is fantastic news and I congratulate the Comhairle on taking forward this initiative”.

Angus Morrison is a Trainer and Co-ordinator of Lucky2BHere in the Western Isles. He said: “This is good news for communities across the Western isles and I am delighted that it has been agreed to proceed with this programme of life-saving equipment and training.”

Highlands and Islands Labour MSP Rhoda Grant said: “I am delighted to hear of this news today.  I met with Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland and Lucky2BHere last year and discussed the unquestionable benefits of having communities trained in ELS.  Lucky2BHere told me of their principal objectives which are to empower communities to manage their own situation when a life threatening incident arises; to work along with the emergency services, major charities, businesses and political groups to realise their aims and to strive to introduce ELS training to the curriculum of all secondary schools in Scotland."

Lucky2BHere is a registered Scottish charity which aims to:

Empower communities to manage their own situation when a life threatening incident arises;

Work along with the emergency services, major charities, businesses and political groups to realise their aims;

Introduce Emergency Life Support (ELS) training to the curriculum of all secondary schools in Scotland.