Members of staff at Specsavers in Northampton raised more than £600 on Saturday 18 February at the launch of a fundraising campaign to buy a defibrillator in the store.  

The team hosted a cake sale, a tombola and face painting for children during the day. Visitors were also treated to a raffle, which included prizes from Northampton Saints, Northampton Town FC, Seckingtons Hairdressers and local restaurant, Poppy Field Farm. 

Lifesaving equipment 

Store director Philip Rigby said: ‘We had a fantastic day in store and are delighted to have raised £630, every penny of which will go towards purchasing a lifesaving defibrillator for use in the local community.’

The team was prompted to organise the fundraiser after contact lens optician, Alison Hawkins, received a phone call to say that her partner had gone into cardiac arrest. 

‘My partner was at work when his heart stopped suddenly,’ Alison explained. ‘He went into cardiac arrest but thankfully the company had a defibrillator, and he was able to receive treatment that saved his life. Thankfully he is making a full recovery at home, but it was a huge shock and highlights that this sort of thing can happen to anyone at any time.’

Community support

Philip adds: ‘As Alison said, cardiac arrest can happen at any time, and without this lifesaving equipment, her partner may not be with us today. Once the defibrillator is installed, it will be available to anyone in the local area should it ever be needed.

‘I’d like to say a big thank you to all our customers who donated and kicked our fundraising off to a great start, as well as everyone who donated prizes to our raffle.’ 

Cardiac arrest occurs when the heart malfunctions and stops beating unexpectedly. Chances of survival following a cardiac arrest decrease by 23% per minute, so it is vital that medical treatment is given as soon as possible. 

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