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Life-saving project gets go-ahead for another year

24th December 2014

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Photograph of Life-saving project gets go-ahead for another year

An event that equips Highland primary 7 pupils with potentially life-saving skills will again take place in 2015.

Members of The Highland Council's Community Safety, Public Engagement and Equalities Committee have given their backing to the "Safe Highlanders" partnership project which, in 2014, took place at Cameron Barracks Inverness and also at Portree and Wick.

Safe Highlanders is a nationally recognised partnership project which promotes community safety, health and crime prevention to Primary 7 or 1st year Secondary pupils.

Planning is underway by partnership agencies to deliver the 2015 Inverness Safe Highlanders. The agencies are: The Highland Council, High Life Highland, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Scottish Southern Energy, British Red Cross, Institute of Safety and Health, and Fujitsu.

Community Safety, Public Engagement and Equalities Committee Chair Councillor Angela MacLean welcomed the feedback on the 2014 Safe Highlands event, she said: "It's vitally important that we can help our children to make that big step from primary to secondary school and to equip them with as many necessary skills as possible to enable them to keep themselves safe.

"Our young people were asked whether their attendance at the event would change their behaviour and make them feel safer. An overwhelming 94% of pupils reported feeling safer and 98% of pupils reported that they will act differently in the future in order to stay safe.

"These are very encouraging figures. I hope that the skills learned will make a difference to our children if they are faced with difficult circumstances in their lives."

The main Safe Highlanders event was held this year in Cameron Barracks in Inverness between 7 and 16 May with 1,640 Primary 7 pupils attending. The event was organised by High Life Highland on the Council's behalf. Events held at Portree on 18 June and Wick on 2 and 3 September were attended by 135 and 276 pupils respectively.

Councillor MacLean added: "Safe Highlanders is based on the principle of “learning by doing" where pupils take part in simulated and practical exercises to acquire life-saving skills. They exercises cover 8 safety themes including first aid, fire and water safety, safety on roads and internet safety. They are also presented with dangers of electricity, building sites and substance misuse.

“Planning for the 2015 event will incorporate stronger links with schools and teachers particularly around the needs of the Curriculum for Excellence and it will be in line with new technology."

Photo Gallery shows young people from Caithness schools at the 2014 Safe Highlander event held in Wick.

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