This year we are delighted to work with Irish track legend David Gillick and our charity partner the Irish Men's Sheds Association.
Men’s sheds have enjoyed extraordinary growth throughout Ireland in recent years. Originating in Australia in the 1990s, the men’s shed phenomenon reached Ireland in 2009 and has gone from strength to strength. There are now over 400 men’s sheds spread throughout the entire island, with 10,000 men participating on a weekly basis.
Men’s sheds are community spaces which bring men of all backgrounds and ages together. Members participate in a wide range of activities, from the purely social to ambitious community and cultural projects. Through the Irish Men’s Sheds Association’s Sheds for Life initiative, sheds have access to wide range of health-related resources and programmes, and 90% of men’s sheds member believe that participating in a shed has improved their health and wellbeing.
To find out more about men’s sheds, or to locate your nearest shed, please visit www.menssheds.ie or follow Irish Men’s Sheds Association on Facebook, or @IrishSheds on Twitter.
Last year our charity partner for Westport Gran Fondo was Croi and in particular their CPR Training Programme.
The reason that we choose Croi is because 2 years ago during the race, Rosaleen Walsh who was taking part suffered a Cardiac Arrest at the age of 38. Had it not been for 2 nurses also taking part in the event who performed CPR until the emergency services arrived Rosaleen would not have survived.
In light of this Croi has been chosen as our charity partner and specifically CPR Training. Funds raised through Westport Gran Fondo will be allocated to the Croi CPR Training Programme and Local Community Groups, Schools etc can apply to Croi to be lucky enough to avail of this training free of charge.
The more people who can perform CPR the more lives that can be saved.
The incidence of Sudden Adult Death among young people from cardiac arrest in Ireland is estimated at approx 2 per 100,000. So while not a common condition it is not entirely rare. There are approximately 5,000 out of hospital cardiac arrests per year in Ireland and approx 70% of these occur in the presence of a family member or friend.
In cardiac arrest the heart goes into an abnormal electrical rhythm – as distinct from a heart attack which is caused by a blockage in the coronary artery. The only possible treatment for cardiac arrest is CPR accompanied by ‘Defibrillation’. CPR is an easily learned life saving skill which can literally make the difference between life and death. In cardiac arrest, with each passing minute the chances of survival are reduced by approx 10% - giving you a 10 minute window to commence CPR and defibrillation. CPR is in effect ‘heart massage’ where the chest compressions are literally pumping blood from the heart to the brain and other vital organs.