COMMUNITY FIRST RESPONDERS
3PR - THE THREE PARISHES RESPONSE TEAM
BOXFORD / EDWARDSTONE / GROTON
THE HISTORY OF 3PR
3PR was originally set up following a meeting on 8th February 2002 and a further meeting at Stargate (old congregational church) on 10th February 2002. Strategy and training were formulated at a meeting on 7th March that year. The logo 3PR encompasses the three parishes of Boxford, Edwardstone and Groton.
The initial cost to set up was nearly £4000, this was raised by donations from private individuals, grants from The British Heart Foundation, Waitrose Sudbury, local parish councils and local committees and trusts. Running costs are relatively low, group members opt to provide their transport and fuel free of charge although recompense is available. The group receive no direct funding so any donations are gratefully received.
Group training was originally carried out by St.John Ambulance through a three day course and topped up by local East of England Ambulance Service paramedic Andrew Barlow who held monthly training sessions in Boxford School hall.
The first call for the group was 6th September 2002 using a borrowed defibrillator, the group purchased their first defibrillator on 11 November 2002.
Since then the group has had a large number of volunteers and answered many hundreds of calls. There are still two founder members, one still responding and the other involved with the group as Life President.
Vic Rice was the original co-ordinator, retiring in 2011 and accepting the honour of Life President.
There are in excess of 70 First Responder Groups in Suffolk. Initial training/enrolment is now carried out by The East of England Ambulance Trust and the courses are still three day events, normally at a local venue. The EEAS have a dedicated Training Officer James Adams (acting) and a Community Partnership Manager Jonathan Needle both based at Ipswich Ambulance Station. In addition, some responders have also received further training and become trainers within their groups.
Other counties throughout the country have similar schemes, East of England Ambulance Service cover Suffolk, Norfolk, Essex, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire.
Boxford 3PR Group train with Elmsett and Sudbury Groups, training sessions being held every second Friday of the month at The Royal British Legion Club, Cordell Street, Long Melford. Responders are further trained and refreshed in basic Life support, use of defibrillator, pulse oximeter, use of Oxygen together with other related subjects and general first aid.