What do you do at St John's Ambulance?

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milly15
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I'm 15 and looking to go to medical school after school and sixth form. I've been looking into volunteering at St John's Ambulance and I was wondering if anyone could tell me what I'd be doing? All I know is that I'd be in the cadets due to my age so any information would be very helpful, thanks
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sarahjones95
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Hey, i joined st.johns ambulance, i gave it up recently but it is really good, you have to go on a training weekend to get your certificate then you get trained to go out in the "real world" have fun! x


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milly15
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Thanks very much, hopefully I'll really enjoy it too!
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lala007
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Hello, I'm also 15, and I joined St John Ambulance when I was 8. I gave it up after my cadet division changed the cadet leader, who had two children at the division... She didn't like me very much... I'm going back to the organisation as I really miss it! It's quite possibly one of the best, and most rewarding things I've ever done. I also want to go on to become a doctor.

At St John Ambulance you do loads of different things, some more practical than others. I've got about 32 different certificates in St John qualifications. From radio communications to child development. At St John, it's up to you how involved you are. I personally made it my life... over the 4 years I was a cadet I gained 204 hours of service, which doesn't include the weekly meetings. I attended events from show jumping to music festivals. I was at the county headquarters, so I got to attend any duties that couldn't be covered by other divisions. It's such an amazing thing to be in! Although, I talked to a member recently and he said that they changed to a regional system as of Monday last week, so it might be a different. Seriously, it's hard to put into words how amazing the organisation is! Although, a lot of the adult members are failed paramedics or other, and they're often a little up themselves. But, I did work with a lot of amazing adult members! If you join the cadets, then you work towards an award called the Grand Prior, but, as you're joining at 15, you probably won't achieve that. You can do the First Aid at work qualification when you're 16, which allows you to attend duties as an adult, which means that you aren't limited to the duties you can attend. Saying that, you can join the Adult Division when you're 16. So, it may be worth waiting until you're 16 before joining the adult division. I'm going to rejoin at a more local division at 15 so that I can achieve my Grand Prior, as I'm only a few certificates off getting it!

Joining St John meant that, after a pretty nasty accident, I was nominated and won an award, Young First Aider of the Year. Although, that was when I was 11, and the photos from it aren't the prettiest I've been in. After writing all that, I'll tell you what you actually do on St John:

Firstly, you'll attend weekly meetings. During these meetings you'll study towards a qualification. I can't remember whether you do one every term or half term. The meetings are pretty structured, and after a while, I found that they got pretty boring, as in my division, as it was the county headquarters, we had to appeal to the younger cadets which out weighed the senior cadets by about 8 to 1. But, you do have to attend these as;
Secondly, you have the opportunity (once you have achieved the Cadet First Aider Level 1) to attend public duties. These are events in which you provide first aid cover for the public. Although, a lot of the time, we spent them wandering around with our first aid kits trying to blag free food. But, I remember attending a Thai Festival, and we had to do a standing spinal extraction on someone who jumped in a pond. The rides in the ambulance are always worth it! I always turned up early as, before each duty you have to carry out a check on any vehicle and kit you will be taking. Then, you have to test the sirens and lights... You then get the hours signed off in your book. There is an award for 50, 100, 200 hours, up to 1000 hours. It's really, really worth all the effort!
You also get the opportunity (provided that you're good enough, and devoted enough) to take part in competitions. We won almost all of our county and regional competitions in first aid, care and drill. It turns out, if you can tell someone that you have the qualification and came first in your individual competitions, they often look fondly on you. That's how I got my work experience. Also, you can tell them some grizzly stories if you have any!

Other than that, I don't know what else to say. I got my Cadet Trainer award, so I was able to teach the public on the annual CPR days, and other stuff... I really think that it's an amazing thing to be part of, and worth every second. However, as you're 15, it may be worth waiting a year to join the adult division. That way, you get more worthwhile qualifications, that look really good on your C.V, as well as you're not limited on the duties you can attend, you get to ride the ambulance more, and you're an adult, not a cadet. Though, saying that, it probably would do you good to start as a cadet before the transition to adult. When you're 16, you get two choices, either to stay in cadets and do the amalfi challenge. Or, to join the adult division.

If you have any more-specific questions, do ask and I'll try my best to answer them. I left cadets, but I was a senior cadet at 14, and I was almost a corporal. But, I'm rejoining soon... As soon as I get an E-mail back.

I hope you find it just as rewarding as me, and hope you get involved in it, as it really is whatever you make of it. If you show enthusiasm, you get a lot more opportunities, and you're also prioritised for duties. Although, my friendship group at school now calls me "nursey" (creative, I know) since I treated one of them for a cut on the knee. Oh, and, the paperwork for casualties is pretty darn long. So, have fun with that!

P.S Sorry for the essay! I'm pretty passionate about St John!
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milly15
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Thanks for that, it's helped me loads! And as for any questions, I'll sure come to you to get them answered if I think of any! It sounds like you really love helping out there so I hope I will too!
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lala007
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I really did, as I said it was a large part of my life. Of course, things change, and I've now had to spend my time on doing an extra qualification that actually goes towards my UCAS points... But, one thing I forgot to mention, if you do volunteer for duties, remember to get everything signed off, and something I wish I knew about while I was volunteering is the website vInspired.com, if you record your hours of volunteering, you can get a whole award for the hours you put in. It's another thing that can go on your C.V, or so I'm told...
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sarahjones95
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^inappropriate


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Cola_23
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(Original post by lala007)
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Hi, I'm 16 and thinking of volunteering at St John's. But I still don't really understand how it works. So do you get to choose what you want to do and how much time to you spend learning about first aid? I am doing my A-levels so I already have a lot of work and don't really have too much time to spend on ECs/volunteering. So how much time do you actually have to put in and can you decide when to do it (like at weekends)? Also, do you have to meet every week throughout the year?

Sorry for asking so many questions!

Thanks in advance
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lala007
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If you're 16, you can join as a Cadet or Adult. As a cadet, because that's what I know about, you can choose the qualification you want to work towards for that half-term. But, each division only offers so many courses, and the number of courses depends on the size of your division. The type of course depends on what you need for your Grand Prior, those that are closer to achieving it generally get to pick that type of qualification is available. Such, if a person who was one qualification off of a Grand Prior, the cadet leader would most likely choose that type of qualification. As you are 16, you will be able to gain the First Aid at Work certificate. Once this is attained, you will be able to sign onto a duty as an Adult, whether you are an Adult member or Cadet member. Generally, when you start, you begin a course of membership. I don't really remember mine as it was five years ago, and I did my Cadet First Aid certificate when I was a Badger member, so it's slightly more than five years. Anyway, as you're 16, I'd join as an adult member, then attend to achieve my First Aid at Work. After that, GAIN EXPERIENCE. Go on as many duties as you can. They are amazing, and if it's not busy, you can generally relax in the back of the ambulance and munch on the free food the events throw your way...

You don't choose when you go, but, you don't get homework. Everything is done with the meetings. And, in Cadets, it's hard to fail. As an adult member, it's much the same, but everything is related to clinical skills. (as far as I'm aware). You attend, and get your Entynox, oxygen, AED, etc qualifications and then re-qualify every year. It's not too much work. St John Ambulance is usually pretty suited to people's free time, it's meant for people to enjoy themselves. It's not meant to be pressure. You may have to revise for some of the clinical qualifications, but probably not until you're 18. Some qualifications are done on weekends, as a weekend course. But, most of them are done in meetings. Public duties are all through the week, and you can choose to attend or not, these are where you are the first aid cover for the public at events. I think you meet once a week through term time. That is certainly the meetings in cadets. You don't have to put too much time into it, my meetings used to be from 6-7:30pm on Thursdays, but divisions vary. Basically, if you're enthusiastic, then you don't need to put in much time at all. It's not strenuous. It's a good thing to get involved in, and you can be as involved as you like. It's a good way to attend events for free and get free food anyway! I used to go to a local music festival, before I went with friends and I was the one that ended up in the first aid tent (embarrassing, I know).

Basically, if you join Cadets, you do a massive variety of qualifications, from first aid, care and radio communications all the way to booking a holiday.
If you join Adults, you do things like AED (defibrillation), First Aid at Work, Advanced First Aid, Ambulance crew training and other more clinical things. You can also treat without supervision and attend any duties you wish.

The choice is up to you from 16, to 18 years old, after your 18th, you can only join Adults. I recommend joining adults. I can't wait until I'm 16, and will join adults as soon as I turn 16! You do more clinical things, I always hated the qualification in booking a holiday... It seems quite pointless. But, I loved the ambulances and I loved the kit. As well as the people and service we did. I think that you should join. Though, at 16 you require an Enhanced CRB.
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Cola_23
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(Original post by lala007)
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Thanks for replying!

So basically, if I join as an adult member, I'll attend to achieve my first aid at work and this is usually done in meetings? And meetings are usually at weekdays and some qualifications are done at weekends? If I join as an adult member, do I still need to do the other qualifications like 'booking a holiday' or is it all just clinical qualifications?

Also, what is an enhanced CRB?
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KingGoonIan
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Hey have a look at the St John Ambulance thread for TSR here: http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show....php?t=1849604

There are lots of comments relating to the organisation there for you to look at and if you post a question in there are members of St John who will likely answer you.
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lala007
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If you join as an adult member, I think you attend a day, or a few days over a weekend to attain your first aid at work. Once you get this, it's good for getting jobs! Put it on your C.V. Most qualifications are attained over a period, in the weekly meetings. But, some you go on external courses over weekends and things, it depends what you want. If you join as an adult member, you only do clinical skills. That's why I left cadets, to rejoin next year as an adult. As the non-clinical skills were not why I joined St. John.

An Enhanced CRB check. CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) checks just check your criminal record. And enhanced CRB covers all your police history, including spent convictions, cautions, warnings and reprimands. It probably doesn't apply to you, but if it does, declare everything when they ask. You shouldn't have to worry about it. Unless you're on the barred list for work with children and vulnerable adults, it is up to the employer whether or not they take you on. Don't worry, St. John Ambulance will deal with it, or inform you of what you need to do.
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Rukhsaar
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(Original post by sarahjones95)
Hey, i joined st.johns ambulance, i gave it up recently but it is really good, you have to go on a training weekend to get your certificate then you get trained to go out in the "real world" have fun! x


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How do you apply for the fist aid training?
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XXSimranXX
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How do i get involoved in this, it sounds interesting im 16 and i also want a career in medicine. Is this available everywhere in the uk i really want to try it out

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woodpecker
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[QUOTE=XXSimranXX;43746701]How do i get involoved in this, it sounds interesting im 16 and i also want a career in medicine. Is this available everywhere in the uk i really want to try it out

It is available everywhere in the UK. As you're under 18, you'd have to join as a Cadet (16 and 17 year-olds can no longer join adult divisions).
You can 'register your interest' on their website (https://www.sja.org.uk/sja/volunteer...uiry-form.aspx), but sometimes they can take a long time to get back to you once you've done that, so if you don't hear anything after a couple of weeks, you could always ring them up or try to find the contact details for your local unit and go directly to them.
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XXSimranXX
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[QUOTE=woodpecker;43872956]
(Original post by XXSimranXX)
How do i get involoved in this, it sounds interesting im 16 and i also want a career in medicine. Is this available everywhere in the uk i really want to try it out

It is available everywhere in the UK. As you're under 18, you'd have to join as a Cadet (16 and 17 year-olds can no longer join adult divisions).
You can 'register your interest' on their website (https://www.sja.org.uk/sja/volunteer...uiry-form.aspx), but sometimes they can take a long time to get back to you once you've done that, so if you don't hear anything after a couple of weeks, you could always ring them up or try to find the contact details for your local unit and go directly to them.
thanks and yhh i have done the register interest thing but im still waiting for someone local to contact me or something

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Rukhsaar
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[QUOTE=XXSimranXX;43873866]
(Original post by woodpecker)

thanks and yhh i have done the register interest thing but im still waiting for someone local to contact me or something

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when did you register? because with mine it took a week and a bit to process and then they contacted me
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XXSimranXX
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[QUOTE=Rukhsaar;43874075]
(Original post by XXSimranXX)


when did you register? because with mine it took a week and a bit to process and then they contacted me
erm i cant remember maybe like 2 weeks ago not sure tbh and they emailed me an application form but said that someone local to me would contact me for the application form or sumat so im just waiting for that i think

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Rukhsaar
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[QUOTE=XXSimranXX;43874115]
(Original post by Rukhsaar)

erm i cant remember maybe like 2 weeks ago not sure tbh and they emailed me an application form but said that someone local to me would contact me for the application form or sumat so im just waiting for that i think

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hmm have you got a SJA local ? because sometimes you may not have one so it can be a long winded process. just phone them up. good luck
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XXSimranXX
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[QUOTE=Rukhsaar;43874159]
(Original post by XXSimranXX)

hmm have you got a SJA local ? because sometimes you may not have one so it can be a long winded process. just phone them up. good luck
erm i dont know,, how do i check? and thank you

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