03 June 2015

A St John Ambulance volunteer is inviting other people from the community to share the same experiences he has gone through.

Jay Thompson, 17, has been volunteering with St John's Ambulance since 2008 and currently has the rank of Corporal.

Jay said he joined so he could gain some important skills.

"I thought it would be good to have some first aid and medical skills, my mum is asthmatic so I thought it would be good to have them," he said. St John provides first aid support at events including Anzac Day and Tunarama, and provides backup support for the SA Ambulance in the event of a major incident.

Currently there are about 20 St John volunteers in Port Lincoln.

When he started, Jay first did a first aid training course that lasted a couple of days before having the opportunity for more training after that, which has provided even more skills.

"I have recently completed training for Certificate II in Emergency Service First Response, which gives excellent skills such as advanced life support," he said.

Starting off as Cadet he has become a Corporal and can also become a Sergeant and even a Cadet Leader once he turns 18.

His highest honour came in 2012 when he went to Sydney to receive his Grand Prior's badge, which is the highest award that a Cadet can receive after earning all 12 proficiency badges.

With all this under his belt he said there was a lot people could get by getting on board as a volunteer with St John Ambulance, and they could travel to events where first aid services are needed.

"You learn skills to save a life, if you're down the street and someone falls or passes out, you've got the skills to help them straight away," he said.

"It can really save their life." Volunteering can also contribute 40 points towards a student's SA Certificate of Education (SACE) score.

Currently the St John Ambulance holds two-hour training sessions on Marine Avenue on Tuesdays from at 5.30pm.

For more information people can call toll free on 1300 360 455.

Caption Text: EQUIPPED. Jay Thompson displayed some of the equipment and training a St John Ambulance volunteer will learn.
Article: Port Lincoln Times, Port Lincoln SA