Children in knife crime hotspots given first aid training to treat stab wounds

  • Watch Amy Sutton's report

Children across the North East and North Yorkshire are being taught how to save their friends' lives if they are stabbed due to the scale of knife crime.

The life-saving training is being delivered by St John Ambulance to children as young as 14 years old to try and give victims a fighting chance of survival if they are attacked.

The initiative follows several high-profile deaths of young people right across our region.

At Redcar and Cleveland College, the sessions were provided by The Prince's Trust to teenagers who were taught how to go from bystander to life-saver. Scenarios were played out involving a party, groups playing in a park, or walking home in the dark.

Scenarios included wrapping a tourniquets around an "injured" dummy leg. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Students Kadie and Courtnei were among the group: "Well if it happens somewhere around your area you would need to act on fight or flight, dial 999, and see what you can do."

"You never know what situation you are gonna be in if something happens. I think it's about knowing you're gonna help someone, so even if you feel scared, if no one is going to get there in time, I know what I need to do so I can help."

Sam Peacock, a youth worker with The Prince's Trust, said the targeted sessions would be extremely beneficial to the group of students with many from crime hotspots across Teesside.

She said: "Students we work with have come from all different backgrounds, some might have seen this kind of behaviour before. So giving them the vital skills to put themselves in a position to help someone is great."

More than 9,000 young people have participated in the Young Responders workshops so far.

The North East was chosen as one of three areas to be targeted for these sessions, alongside London and the West Midlands.

Statistics show the North East is rated among the five "most dangerous" regions in England for knife crime.

Per 1,000 people in the population, Teesside has one of the highest rates for knife crime in the country - more than Greater Manchester and London.

Students at Redcar and Cleveland College were among those receiving the training. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Volunteers at St John Ambulance say that while tragedy cannot always be prevented, through education, it is hoped that if young people are faced with these horrors, they have the skillset to act responsibly.

Pauline Bartley has played a key part in delivering the workshops in the North East: "It's a sad reality, so all we can do is [help] with education. Sometimes, you can't prevent, that's not always possible. But giving simple, basic steps, there's more chance of them being able to help and support and hopefully, through running the sessions it will make them think about their own actions when they are out there too."

Further sessions will be held across Catterick, Darlington, Bishop Auckland and Middlesbrough.

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