As part of my Girlguiding I recently went on an intensive 16 hour first aid course – focusing on the outdoors.
I have to say by the end of the weekend my brain really did ache somewhat and I really felt that I couldn’t absorb any more information. Which is really as it should be by the end of something like that.
I highly encourage you to do a basic first aid course, you can find them quite cheaply through your adult education locations or the Red Cross. I feel happier knowing that in a bad situation I will be able to help out in some way.
The way the course was taught was a classic example of ‘scaffolding’ in practice, we started off with the first part of the class ABC, – Assess the situation, think about personal protection (gloves etc), check their Alert response etc and then they built up into the Breathing part, then Circulation etc etc. They had us practice more times than I can count at each stage before moving onto the next.
There was also lots of examples of ‘assessment FOR learning’ (as opposed to OF learning), where the victims would tell the responder what they did wrong and grade them against a chart. It was easy to get a zero grade for forgetting to do some major points (assessing the situation for danger, checking they could breathe without assistance). It took me about 4 assessements of getting 0 grades before those basic, but vital things, completely stuck in my mind. And because it was someone who I was supposed to be saving telling me those things I remembered better than I would have done if it was an observer telling me.
By the last afternoon the scenarios had got a lot more complicated and we were outdoors so we had to practice dealing with multiple issues, plus being cold and having to get the victim warm and covered up. It was an extremely well built course.
It was taught by React First and the course was a ITC Certificate in Outdoors First Aid and I am proud to have completed it, even if it was the first thing I thought about when I woke up for about a week after the course!
I wouldn’t have been able to do such a detailed, intensive course without volunteering for Girlguiding. I love it, not only do I get to help girls in my area, but I am learning and developing my skills as well. Interested in becoming part of the amazing Girlguiding organisation? Check out here for more details, or contact me for a chat.