'We can make a difference in Milltown'
Milltown First Responders Group Secretary Damien Brown has said that he hopes his group will be able to go live "as soon as possible" by raising the required funds for the equipment it needs.
The voluntary team is currently made up of 16 members, who will be available to respond to calls made from Milltown and surround areas to the National Ambulance Service.
However, the group still requires another €3,800 for the equipment kits it needs, which includes items like defibrillators, and mannequins to aid with training of new members.
"When people ring 999 or 112 and look for the National Ambulance Service within the Milltown area, we can assist in an actual or potentially life threatening emergency such as a cardiac arrest, heart attack, stroke or choking," Damien said.
"In situations like that, minutes can be crucial, and in a rural area like Milltown, having a service like that available has the potential to save lives.
"So far we've received terrific backing from individuals and groups like local businesses and schools, raising €1,500 of the €5,300 we need, but we have to keep fund-raising so we can go live as soon as possible. It could make a huge difference to someone," he added.
Damien said that once the local group goes live, it is hoped that it will initially be available for weekend calls, but the ultimate aim is to acquire sufficient numbers to provide a full-time service.
"Our members have undertaken First Responders courses, and have filled other requirements, which include the need to be able to drive," he said.
"While the group isn't yet live and is only 16-strong at the moment, we are already looking for new members to join our fleet because we need numbers for the future.
"If you're interested, you can get in touch with us via the 'Milltown Community First Responder Group' Facebook page, or you can ring my colleague Michelle Bartlett at 087 979 3986, or drop me a line at (087) 455 1895.
"Once you've contacted us, we can take you through the requirements and put you on the road to signing up. We've seen for ourselves the crucial role a First Responders group has played in places like Killarney, and we know a group like this will be a great addition to Milltown," he added.
You can support Milltown First Responders Group by donating to its cause via its Credit Union account, the details of which can be obtained from Damien or Michelle.
A number of fund-raisers are also scheduled, including a night of music, tasty bites, and spot prizes set for Mike O'Shea's Bar in Milltown from 9.30pm on June 2.