When Larissa Winter and her family went to the ANZAC Day dawn service at Currumbin they were moved by this emotional commemoration of the Australian spirit. Little did Larissa know that on this important day of Australian sacrifice, her skills as a mother of a child living with epilepsy, would see her render first aid and help save the life of Emma*, an 18-month-old having a seizure.
Emma was unconscious and convulsing as her brain and little body were wracked by an eight-minute seizure. The little girl was in danger. Larissa knew she had to step up and help.
For Larissa stepping in and helping this young child was just the first thing she needed to do. The next day Larissa was on the phone to Epilepsy Queensland knowing that we needed to do more to increase awareness of seizure first aid.
People were trying to help this little girl, but they were wanting to do two things that put her life at risk.
Larissa told the team: “They wanted to put her on her back. She was foaming at the mouth. If they had followed through with this, she could have drowned in minutes. They were also looking for something to put in her mouth to stop her swallowing or biting her tongue but I stopped them doing this. These two simple things learnt in seizure first aid training with Epilepsy Queensland helped save Emma’s life.”
Seizure first aid is not just handy for people who have a family member living with epilepsy. One in 10 people will have a seizure during their lifetime.
The challenge for us at Epilepsy Queensland remains to spread seizure first aid awareness further. So that people in the community, in workplaces and schools know what to do if someone has a seizure. Epilepsy Queensland offers comprehensive and practical training and information packs on seizure first aid. We saw this in action when Larissa was able to assist little Emma on ANZAC Day.
But to reach and train more people costs money and we can’t do this without your help. If we do not act, then the consequences are unthinkable. Every dollar that we receive will help us to reach and train more people in seizure first aid and create a brighter future for kids just like Emma.
Your vital donation will help us to provide:
• $20 enables us increase seizure awareness in three schools by printing and mailing seizure first aid posters for their staff rooms
• $50 will provide a seizure first aid information kit for a business so that staff are ready to assist their colleagues or customers if they have a seizure at their workplace
• $250 will enable us to assist with preparation of an epilepsy management plan, so that child gets the help they need at school and home to best manage their epilepsy
• $550 will pay for a training session at a school or not-for-profit group increasing the skill level of all staff and keeping children with epilepsy in that school safe
• $1,000 will help launch a social media awareness campaign to educate more people about seizure first aid and help reduce the stigma of epilepsy
We urgently need to build epilepsy awareness and make seizure first aid training more available. Please help save the lives of Queenslanders by donating to our seizure first aid project today to equip families as well as more businesses, clubs and schools.