Defibrillator Fundraising Success!

Learn To Dance 2013 SquareAfter a particularly energetic Jive & Quickstep class, with our over 50’s group on a Tuesday afternoon, we were asked [in jest] where the nearest defibrillator was.  Whilst asked jokingly this did however get us thinking…

Enquiries with Burnham Parish Council revealed that the nearest AED (Automated External Defibrillator) would be at Burnham Park Hall, around a 5 minute drive from the studio.  Whilst AEDs have been shown to double the survival rate of someone suffering a sudden cardiac arrest, their effectiveness reduces by around 10% for every minute delay in their usage.

Given that our studio is based within football playing fields and is a hotspot for dog walkers and joggers, we felt the benefit of having an AED outside the studio could not be overlooked if it meant the difference between life or death for someone.

Burnham Parish Council offered to pay for the installation and hosting of the external cabinet if we were able to raise enough to cover the net cost of the equipment and cabinet of £1,366.25.

We looked at a variety of options for how we might raise the funds required, and eventually decided on a fun day of dance sessions on Monday 28th May.

Any excess funds raised would then be donated to the Check Heart Appeal, a fundraising page set up to raise money for C-R-Y (Cardiac Risk in the Young), a charity close to Antony & Emma’s heart.

Check Heart LogoIn the morning we had an American Smooth workshop, a FitSteps taster and a lunchtime Tea Dance; whilst the afternoon saw ‘Singin’ in the Rain’, Bollywood and Charleston inspired workshops.

All of that did mean that Antony had to have at least 5 costume changes!

We received a number of donations, both before and after the day, from those that were unable to attend and we also held a raffle with a variety of prizes including a LearnToDance gift voucher and the top prize of a family photoshoot with Emma-Louise Walton Photography.

The raffle was closed and drawn a week later live on our Facebook Page, although we started to panic when a number of duplicate winners started being drawn (regardless of how much Antony shook and mixed up the tickets) but it evened out in the end!

Live draw of our Defibrillator Fundraising raffle

Gepostet von Learn To Dance am Dienstag, 5. Juni 2018

Between the fundraising day, raffle and donations LearnToDance raised a total of £1,855.63!

We instructed Burnham Parish Council to order the defibrillator and are pleased to announce that this has now been installed!

defibrillatorWe would like to say a massive thank you to everyone involved in the running/administration of the event, everyone that donated or attended the day, and Burnham Parish Council for their support.

Much appreciated,

Antony, Emma and the LearnToDance team


About LearnToDance

LearnToDance is a Ballroom and Latin American Dance School run by husband and wife team Antony & Emma-Louise Holeksa and has been running since 2006.  Classes for all levels and ages, and personal tuition, take place throughout the week, as well as dance breaks and private events.

In 2016 we moved into our own dedicated studio at the Cherry Orchard in Burnham and now offer sessions most days of the week.


About Check Heart Appeal

This has been set up to honour the memory of Ben Birch who died on the 22nd May 2013 of Sudden Adult Death Syndrome (S.A.D.S).

Undiagnosed heart conditions claim at least 12 young people every week in the UK and our chosen charity, Cardiac Risk in the Young, (CRY) fights to raise awareness, support bereaved families and promote heart screening, ECG testing programmes and medical research into S.A.D.S.

Ben was 29 years old and was taken from us suddenly. There were no warning signs and we hope that raising any amount of money to help prevent other familes from suffering the loss we have suffered will be a great way to remember him.


About C-R-Y

Every week in the UK at least 12 young people die of undiagnosed heart conditions. Since its formation in 1995, Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) has been working to reduce the frequency of young sudden cardiac death (YSCD). CRY supports young people diagnosed with potentially life-threatening cardiac conditions and offers bereavement support to families affected by YSCD. CRY promotes and develops heart screening programmes and funds medical research. CRY publishes and distributes medical information written by leading cardiologists for the general public. CRY funds specialist referral, screening and cardiac pathology services at leading UK hospitals.


About Defibrillators

An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses the life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias of ventricular fibrillation and pulseless ventricular tachycardia, and is able to treat them through defibrillation, the application of electricity which stops the arrhythmia, allowing the heart to reestablish an effective rhythm.

With simple audio and visual commands, AEDs are designed to be simple to use for the layperson, and the use of AEDs is taught in many first aid, certified first responder, and basic life support (BLS) level cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) classes.

Uncorrected, these cardiac conditions (ventricular tachycardia, ventricular fibrillation, asystole) rapidly lead to irreversible brain damage and death, once cardiac arrest takes place. After approximately three to five minutes in cardiac arrest, irreversible brain/tissue damage may begin to occur. For every minute that a person in cardiac arrest goes without being successfully treated (by defibrillation), the chance of survival decreases by 7 percent per minute in the first 3 minutes, and decreases by 10 percent per minute as time advances beyond ~3 minutes.

Observational studies have shown that in out of hospital cardiac arrest, public access defibrillators when used were associated with 40% median survival. When operated by non-dispatched lay first responders they have the highest likelihood of leading to survival.