First Aid courses boost community safety in Cowdenbeath area

First Aid course attendees

Cowdenbeath area Community Use team are pleased to announce the successful completion of two Emergency First Aid courses, funded by the Local Community Planning Budget. This initiative aimed to enhance community safety by providing essential first aid training to local residents.

Members from Cowdenbeath Area Committee approved £960 from the Local Community Planning Budget, which funded two nationally recognised certificated Emergency First Aid courses. The courses were held at the Maxwell Centre in Cowdenbeath in November 2023, and at Fife Cycle Park in Crosshill in February this year.

The free places were made available to various community groups, including dance schools, the Cowdenbeath Civic Week and Children’s Gala Committee, a cycling club, Andy’s Man Club, and others. Sixteen individuals from these groups participated in the training and all attendees successfully completed the course and received a vocational qualification valid for three years. One participant was so inspired that they went on to complete four additional first aid courses and are now providing first aid at large events.

This initiative has created 16 new First Aiders in the heart of our community, equipping them with the skills to provide potentially lifesaving support. The feedback from attendees was overwhelmingly positive, with everyone expressing satisfaction with the training received.

Councillor Alex Campbell, Convenor of the Cowdenbeath Area Committee said: "We are delighted to see the positive impact of these Emergency First Aid courses on our community. The safety and well-being of our residents are paramount, and initiatives like this play a crucial role in ensuring that. We are proud to support projects that equip local groups and individuals with essential lifesaving skills."

Scott Fenton, Community Use Team Manager added: "Looking ahead, we plan to share the success of this initiative across the area and the wider Community Use team. We will also apply for further funding to continue offering these vital courses and to expand essential first aid skills within our communities. Engagement with local residents will be a key focus, encouraging more people to participate in future courses. Having local First Aiders is more important than ever and we are committed to continuing this vital project to ensure our communities are equipped to handle emergencies.

Historically, our Community Use team has regularly offered various first aid courses across Fife, primarily funded through Skills Development Scotland Individual Training Accounts (ITA). However, post-pandemic challenges and the cost of living crisis led to a decline in demand for these courses, making this recent funding crucial.