A BIRCHWOOD mum is urging residents to support a life-saving campaign to make it compulsory for every school and sports club in the country to have a defibrillator on site.
Marika Latham, aged 33, has launched a petition after her seven-year-old son Ciaran died of a cardiac arrest in April last year.
The Warrington Guardian is backing Marika’s fight for more defibrillators and calling on readers to help her reach 100,000 signatures so the petition can be considered by MPs for a debate in Parliament.
Marika, who is also mum to Brendon, aged 13, and Riley, aged 18 months, said: “The work we have done so far has meant a lot to me as I know children are safe.
“I’m doing this to keep Ciaran’s memory alive but I also don’t want another family to go through what I’m still going through.
“If we can save one life then we will have done our job.”
So far the charity Ciaran’s Cause has handed out 28 defibrillators to schools and two sports clubs in the town with another 10 hoped to be handed out by the end of the month along with training for teachers and staff.
If funds continue at the same rate and £20,000 is raised, the charity hope every school in Warrington will have a defibrillator by April and the one year anniversary of Ciaran’s death.
Former Bolton player Fabrice Muamba, who collapsed during a game last year, is also backing the campaign as well as Labour's Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham MP who organised a heart safety summit at Westminster.
Marika, who in 2013 is also pushing for CPR to be taught in schools, added: “A patient who has gone into cardiac arrest needs to have a defib there within four minutes or the chances of survival drops.
“North West Ambulance have been creating a directory so when they receive a 999 call they can work out where the nearest defib is and get it to the patient so the whole community benefits.
“I would collapse if we got 100,000 signatures but even half of that would be an amazing backing to go back down to Westminster this year.
“I want to thank the community so much for what they have helped us achieve so far.”
To show your support visit here epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/42192