Sentinel are proud to announce Heartbeat project accepted by the Aviva Community Fund

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Insurance specialists Aviva have created the Aviva Community Fund, which will offer from £1,000 to £25,000 to local community groups and organisations.

Aviva set up the Community Fund following research into small and local organisations. It found that 85% of those surveyed were not confident that they could raise the minimum funding necessary to remain active in the next financial year.

Yet in many cases a comparatively small sum could make a significant difference. Aviva found that the average additional sum required to sustain the day-to-day running of small and local groups for another year is just £3,697. Consequently 47% of those surveyed knew that £1,000 or less would make their group sustainable

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Sentinel’s chosen charity for 2015 is Heartbeat who are a locally based charity in Preston and are the North West’s leading cardiac rehabilitation charity, providing services for over 500 people every week.

Sentinel have submitted an application to the Aviva Community Fund Project on behalf of Heartbeat in an attempt to secure funding from the scheme in order to assist in the implementation of a new project.

Every year we hear numerous tragic stories of local, young, fit and healthy people, often involved in sports, dying because of sudden cardiac death. It is one of the most common causes of death in young people. Every single week 12 young people, (aged 35 and under) die suddenly from a previously undiagnosed heart condition. The thing is, so many of these deaths are preventable and we, Heartbeat and Aviva,  can potentially do something to identify those at risk and in doing so reduce the number of sudden cardiac deaths in our own local community and area.

Heartbeat would like to fund a project that has the potential to deliver positive change to young people by offering a screening programme that could diagnose most cardiac abnormalities and in doing so help to prevent young sudden cardiac deaths. Presently 80% of young people who suffer sudden cardiac death have no signs or symptoms and the only way to detect a potentially serious abnormality is through cardiac screening. There is not a locally based charity that currently offers an on-going service of this kind and the small amount of testing that is delivered by a national charity is always in high demand and over-subscribed.

Heartbeat’s plan is to offer ECG (electrocardiograph) screening to assess the risk for sudden cardiac death and in doing so prevent it. They have the opportunity to work with the Lancashire Sunday Football League which has teams of amateur football players throughout the area aged between 16 and 35. Sudden cardiac death in young athletes is the leading cause of medical death in this group of people. Recent high profile cases have increased awareness and fear, however screening for this in the amateur athlete is difficult to access. With funding Heartbeat would hope to be able to open this up and reach more young people involved in other activities and sports clubs in the vicinity.

Funding could allow Heartbeat to provide screening, either as ECG screening, which would identify potential risks and refer for further investigation, or potentially offer a more in depth screening programme with further investigations carried out by Heartbeat. Either of these screening options would provide a much needed service to the local area and potentially reach thousands of young individuals which with an early and accurate diagnosis could prevent and reduce the number of young people dying from sudden cardiac death. A simple test which can be carried out locally at Heartbeat can have the impact to prevent unnecessary suffering and ultimately save young people’s lives.

Following Sentinels initial application to the Aviva Community Fund Project we are pleased to announce that the application has been accepted.

From the 30th April  until the 31st May 2015, members of the public and business community will be able to use the following link to register, then submit up to 10 votes in support of their chosen projects.

Please click on the following link to register and vote for this worthy cause.

https://community-fund.aviva.co.uk/voting/Project/View/2590

The projects with the most votes will then be short-listed and judged by a panel of experts and the winners announced.

We have an opportunity to make a real difference to the community and more importantly to potentially save young lives.

Please provide your support by taking just a few minutes out of your life to cast your vote and save a life.

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