Saving a Life: First Aid Training for Faith Centres


Strengthening Faith Institutions (SFI) and CodeRed Paramedical have teamed up to deliver mandatory first aid training for faith institutions, and supplementary schools. Last week in South London, a faith centre without a first aid provider on site were unable to save a  6 year old boy from choking. This tragedy indicates the importance of accredited first aid training for your faith centre, including teachers, volunteers and any individual who is in direct contact with children.  

Faith institutions play a vital role in the community and act as a safe environment for all to come together to worship, congregate, study and engage in civic events. Many faith centres also have supplementary schools where children can come to learn about their faith. These faith institutions have a duty of care to provide a safe environment for the children by having safeguarding procedures in place as well as staff on site with first aid training.

Faith institutions have a duty of care to ensure that children are safe at all times, with at least one trained first-aid provider on site, for all opening hours of the faith centre. The Health and Safety commission (HSC) guidance recommends that organisations should provide risk assessments, which includes first aid training. Supplementary school teachers owe pupils a duty of care, therefore, schools should carefully consider the likelihood  of risk to both pupils and visitors, to ensure allowances are made for policies and deciding on the number of first aid personnel. To download a health and safety policy template, click here.

First aid training has practical benefits, such as becoming safety aware which reduces any risks and saves lives, particularly when urgent attention is needed. It is vital that staff and teachers in faith supplementary schools, such as Madrassas, Sunday Schools and Yeshivas, are able to confidently manage an emergency without confusion. Every faith centre should always have at least one person on site trained to perform CPR, use an automatic external defibrillator, handle shock, choking and burns. Critical skills for emergencies can be useful both in and out of the work place and therefore, investing in first aid training would also be investing in the safety of our society.

The training SFI offers is delivered by Waheed Hussain, who has over seventeen years’ experience within the Ambulance Service and is currently a Paramedic. He is qualified in Level 3 Award in Education and Training. The course is accredited by First Aid Industry Body (FAIB) and the Federation of First Aid Training Organisations (FOFATO). SFI and CodeRed provide a review of the provision in schools and emergency regulations.

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