Firefighters’ Everly Pregnant single raises thousands for charity

A chart topping bid by firefighters has raised thousands of pounds for two local causes.

Central red watch and 999 operators at South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue were part of a daring drive to reach the top of the Christmas charts with ‘Chip Pan’ by the Everly Pregnant Brothers.

Thousands of people bought the track and after a delay whilst official download figures were collated, the band has revealed that the track has raised £4,311, which will be split between Shelter and Age UK Sheffield.

Although the track didn’t reach the festive song summit, it helped raise awareness of kitchen fire safety amongst millions of people.

Highlights of the assault on the yuletide music chart included two national television appearances and more than five million views online for a video which accompanies the song. Leaders, businesses and celebrities from across Sheffield also threw in their support for the campaign.

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Martin Blunden, said: “Both our staff and the South Yorkshire public really got behind this campaign. Although it was just a bit of fun, albeit with a serious safety message at its heart, it’s fantastic that the song will have a lasting impact on local people having raised such a lot of money for two great causes, both of which are closely linked to our work supporting the most vulnerable people in society.”

Bluebell Smith, community fundraising manager of Age UK Sheffield said; “We’re so grateful to the Everly Pregnant Brothers and South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue for raising over £2,000 for Age UK Sheffield. With the single being realised just before Christmas, it really raised awareness about the support we offer during a time that can be exceptionally difficult for older people, particularly those who are lonely or isolated. Everyone across the organisation loved getting involved, and even our customers at the Wellbeing Centre were singing the song and wearing a ‘Me Chip Pans On Fire’ T-Shirt!”

Everly Pregnant Brothers’ band member Klive Humberstone said; “It’s a privilege being in a position to help raise money for two great charities, the fact we had a reyt laugh in the process was an added bonus. We doff our hats to the gang at Red Watch for being great sports and being just as daft as us.”

Chris Taylor, Sheffield team leader at Shelter said; “We are really grateful to the Everly Pregnant Brothers for donating half of the proceeds from Chip Pan to our services in Sheffield, and thankful also to South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue for publicising the track. The donation will help us make a tangible difference to Sheffield people who are in real need of support and advice with their housing problems.”

Team programme success as young people turn their lives around

A number of young people are now in work or education thanks to the success of the emergency services run Prince’s Trust Programme.

South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue (SYFR) and South Yorkshire Police (SYP) teamed up with the Prince’s Trust to deliver the Prince’s Trust Team Programme two years ago. During that time around 75 young people have benefited from the 12 week personal development course for unemployed 16 – 25 year olds, offering work experience, qualifications, practical skills, community projects and a residential week.

Individuals gained new skills, mixed with new people and made new friends, they were given help with job-hunting and CV writing and most importantly a big boost to their confidence and a real sense of achievement.

Past participants are now championing the programme, with their new lives and careers ahead of them these young people are encouraging others to take their first step and to sign up for this life changing experience.

Lee Niven, a member of our first Team Programme in Barnsley, managed to secure an apprenticeship with Network Rail while on the course, which has now led to full time employment as part of the Network Rail’s emergency response team and is gaining valuable qualifications which will secure his future.

Lee Niven said; “Without the support of the team leaders, the Prince’s Trust and the Fire and Police service I would not have had the confidence to go for this role. I would recommend this programme to everybody who needs a step up in life.”

Tara Nortcliffe was part of Team 3 at Barnsley she said; “After a successful work placement through the programme at a care home I was really pleased when they offered me a full time job.  This is the field that I have always wanted to work in.

“I have had a difficult few years but being on the Prince’s Trust programme helped me overcome all the barriers that I had faced and now look forward to the future.”

Emma Salt was a member of Team 3 at Barnsley and at the end of the course was able to secure a job at Barnsley Football club on match days and also works in the restaurant there.

Emma said; “I really enjoyed the Prince’s Trust programme, I made loads of new friends and my confidence has just grown.  I want to help others get the same experience as me which is why I have now volunteered with South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue and South Yorkshire Police to help run the Team Programme.”

We are now recruiting for the next Team Programme’s based in Dearne and Barnsley, to be part of it and to take that first step contact John Daley on 07769 887249 or princestrust@syfire.gov.uk.

More details can be found on the South Yorkshire Police website here www.southyorks.police.uk/princestrust

Follow updates on Twitter at #PrincesTrust

Youtube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XvSKmcRN_Qc

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Prince’s Trust Team graduates with emergency services honours

Fifteen young people have successfully graduated from the Prince’s Trust Team Programme having completed a challenging 12 week programme.

South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue (SYFR) and South Yorkshire Police (SYP) teamed up with the Prince’s Trust to deliver the Prince’s Trust Team Programme. Team is a 12 week personal development course for unemployed 16 – 25 year olds, offering work experience, qualifications, practical skills, community projects and a residential week.

The young people have all been thrown out of their comfort zone during the last few weeks, participating in a week-long residential in the Peak District, transforming the area around Manvers Lake as part of their community project and learning new skills in individual work placements.

The graduation which was held at Rotherham Town Hall was a celebration of all their hard work and efforts. It was attended by their friends and family as well as local dignitaries.

SYP Assistant Team Leader Sarah Hague said; “I am really proud of the whole group, throughout the Team Programme the young people have experienced a sense of achievement which has inspired them to move forward with new confidence and ambition. We wish them all the luck for their future.”

SYFR Area Manager Steve Helps, said: “The last 12 weeks have been about building the confidence of these young people and equipping them with the skills qualifications and experience to find employment and build better lives for themselves. From classes in CV building to work placements we have been able to offer participants crucial skills and insights they otherwise may never have experienced. I am truly proud of the role the fire service has played in helping these young people aspire to a better future.”

Would you like to be part of the next Team Programme?  We are now recruiting for members in Rotherham and Barnsley, to be part of the Team or for further details contact John Daley on 07769 887249 or princestrust@syfire.gov.uk.

South Yorkshire firefighter saves life of Leicester City football fan

An off-duty South Yorkshire firefighter has helped to save the life of a football fan during Leicester City’s Champions’ League triumph over Sevilla this week.

Caz Whiteman, a South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue (SYFR) firefighter currently based at the service’s training centre, was in the crowd for the match at Leicester’s King Power Stadium on Tuesday night when a fellow spectator collapsed with a suspected heart attack.

Caz, who was sat nearby, immediately rushed to support pitch side first aiders and deliver cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for more than 15 minutes until he was taken to hospital by ambulance. The man, who has three children, is now making a full recovery.

Caz said: “My seats were just three rows from the front of the pitch and just as the teams were starting to come out for the second half, I noticed that a spectator was in difficulty. I came down to the front of the pitch to see what I could do to help and it became clear he had suffered a heart attack and gone into cardiac arrest. Along with the pitch side medics, I cleared his airway and immediately performed mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and chest compressions.

“This is where the skills I’ve picked up from my day job really came into their own. Firefighters already have the skills and knowledge to provide effective first responder care in emergency situations, particularly at incidents were we may arrive on scene before paramedics. My actions were a natural, instinctive reaction to the situation in front of me. Anyone with the right skills and training would have done the same thing. But I’m just so relieved that he has made it and I wish him well for a full recovery.”

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Martin Blunden, said: “I already know that we employ an incredible selection of individuals who perform brilliantly, day in, day out, to keep our communities safe. But Caz’s brilliant quick thinking and life saving actions really did go above and beyond the call of duty and highlight that, in some ways, a firefighter is never ‘off duty’. The skills and training we give our crews stay with them for life, which this inspiring, life saving story confirms.”

Prince’s Trust team transforms Barnsley theatre

A team of young people taking part in a major local youth development programme have unveiled their hard work and transformation of a community theatre.

The group, who are taking part in the Prince’s Trust Team Programme have spent the last week tidying, cleaning and decorating the changing room and corridor area at the Dearne Playhouse on Washington Street in Goldthorpe.

The Prince’s Trust Team Programme is being delivered by South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue and South Yorkshire Police from Barnsley fire station. Team Programme is a 12 week course for unemployed 16 to 25 year olds, offering work experience, qualifications, practical training and a residential development week.

The programme encourages the young people to nominate their own community project, with those on the current scheme choosing to transform this well loved community theatre for the local people.  The backstage area has now been brightened up and is a calming place for the thousands of young children and adults using the theatres facilities each year.

The group were able to fund the transformation after raising cash from a raffle and a bag pack at Asda the week before.

South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Team Leader Rhian Oxley said: “Team Programme is about more than simply boosting young people’s employment skills. It gives them hope, confidence and the opportunity to make a difference.

“The community project the young people have been involved in is the perfect proof of that aspiration and we hope the sense of achievement it gives them will give them the self-belief which they can transfer to their future lives.”

Young people launch fire service funded film to tackle anti-social behaviour

A fire service funded film project is helping to tackle anti-social behaviour in South Yorkshire.

The Salvation Army, in partnership with South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue (SYFR) and South Yorkshire Police (SYP), has been working with a group of young people from Aston Academy, Handsworth Grange Community Sports College and Outwood Academy City to create the film called ‘The Power of Pressure’. A series of workshops were designed to give them the skills and confidence to explore how making the wrong decisions can affect the lives of young people and their families and then supporte the group in putting this difficult subject to film.

The project and film aims to reduce the levels of anti-social behaviour and protect the most vulnerable people, as well as educating young people on drugs and alcohol. It is hoped that schools and colleges will use the film to start discussions around the topics addressed.

The film has this week been launched at an Oscar themed night at the SYFR’s Training and Development Centre, to an audience including the Lord Mayor of Sheffield Councillor Denise Fox and Fire Authority Members along with family and friends.

The Salvation Army were awarded £5,910 for the project under the South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Authority’s funding scheme, Stronger Safer Communities Reserve.

The fund saw dozens of registered charities, community organisations and partner agencies come forward and apply for grants from the £2 million fund, which had been set aside from the Authority’s reserves. Groups were able to bid for as little as £5,000 or as much as £150,000 to support projects which reduce injuries, save lives and make South Yorkshire safer.

SYFR Head of Prevention & Protection Steve Helps said: “Anti social behaviour can put a big strain on local communities, so preventative measures are becoming more important than ever.  This film will be a great tool to educate and inspire young people to make the correct life choices.”

Lord Mayor of Sheffield Councillor Denise Fox said; “‘This project has been a real example of partnership in action between South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue, South Yorkshire Police and the Salvation Army. The young people have been supported to make this film, and I would like to congratulate them for their hard work and commitment.

“They will be an inspiration to their friends and family, highlighting important life lessons about making the right choices, and the consequences of making the wrong choices.”

Housing providers given extra time to bid for fire service sprinkler funding

South Yorkshire housing providers are being given extra time to access fire service funding to support the installation of sprinklers in high-risk homes.

South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue (SYFR) attends dozens of serious house fires every year in social housing and sheltered accommodation.

To help tackle the problem and increase the number of sprinkler systems fitted across the county, earlier this year SYFR launched a  £1 million fund to encourage more housing providers to install them in buildings lived in by those residents most at risk from fire.

Head of prevention and protection Steve Helps, said: “We’re pleased that several organisations have already come forward to take advantage of this scheme, but we have also listened to feedback from other potential partners who have requested more time to scope and research appropriate funding bids.

“Sprinklers are a cost effective way of making homes safer – they stop fires from spreading, put them out quickly and save lives. We are especially concerned about those people who are most at risk of fire such as those with mobility or mental health problems or people with dementia who may not know how to react, or be able to react quickly enough, if they hear a smoke alarm.”

The installation of sprinkler systems in new build homes is now mandatory in Wales and SYFR is actively promoting the use of this type of protection in all types of buildings to build resilience and safety into local communities.

South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Authority’s sprinkler fund is open to any social  or private housing provider. It will part fund those projects which demonstrate the best value and innovation in protecting the most vulnerable people possible from fire.  It forms part of the Stronger Safer Communities Reserve, with money set aside from the Authority’s reserves.

For more information on how to submit a funding bid contact bfsadmin@syfire.gov.uk

Award win for firefighters clean up

Firefighters have been given an award of recognition for their help with cleaning up a Sheffield skate park.

The fire crew from Tankersley White Watch came to the rescue of the local community after the new Angram Bank skate park in High Green was left vandalised last November.

The skate park had been due to be opened that day, but was deliberately targeted by vandals who left washing up liquid covering the area.

The crew members Wayne Severn, Matthew Craig, Alan Barraclough and Dave Rogers set straight to work washing, scrubbing and rinsing the washing up liquid away.

As a way of thanking the fire crew for their assistance the Parish Council has now awarded the crew The Chairman’s Award in recognition for their hard work and community spirit.

Crew Manager Matthew Craig said; “The park was due to be opened that day, we did what we did to enable the opening ceremony to still go ahead for the local people.  We are really honoured to have been chosen for this award and are very pleased that we were able to help out.”

Fire Cadet to compete in Junior Olympics

A South Yorkshire Fire Cadet will be representing Team GB under 16’s Inline Puck Hockey Squad in America this summer.

Evan Coles, a Fire Cadet at Stocksbridge fire station is hoping to be in Los Angeles this July at the AAU Junior Olympics. It will last for eight days, and the team will take part in a minimum of ten games in two competitions (International and Club tournaments).

Fire Cadets learn firefighting skills and techniques from specially qualified instructors to develop practical, life and communication skills.  It also encourages young people to be part of a team and to enhance their physical and mental capabilities, skills which Evan will need to take up this fantastic opportunity.

Evan said; “The Great Britain team is made up of players from all four of the home nations, to be asked to represent my Country is a real honour and something that all sports people strive for during their lifetime.  It comes at a cost though, as I need to raise £1,500 to cover my equipment and travel.”

Youth Engagement Officer Nicola Hobbs said; “This is the chance of a lifetime for Evan, we are all really proud of him here at South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue.  He has been a fire cadet for nearly three years and has grown in confidence over this time. He is a well respected and dedicated member of the Stocksbridge Fire Cadet team.  We will all be routing for him this summer and wish him all the best.”

If you would like to become a Fire Cadet and would like to learn new skills and support the fire service’s work in the local community please get in touch.

For more information, email Nicola Hobbs at nhobbs@syfire.gov.uk.

Can you help make Evan’s dream come true by giving a small donation towards his trip – click here for Evans justgiving page.

Fire engine blocked by parked cars

Firefighters are pleading with drivers not to block access to narrow streets by parking on both sides of the road after a fire engine was left unable to reach an emergency.

Fire crews were called out to Roebuck Road in Sheffield during the evening of Saturday 28 January to reports of a laundry fire at a nursing home.

The crew from Rivelin station however was unable to reach the incident due to parked cars blocking their way.

Instead, a fire engine from Central station had to attend via another route, but lost valuable minutes in reaching the incident.  Luckily no one was injured in the fire.

We are urging residents to think about their parking as they could be putting the lives of their families, friends and neighbours at risk.

Area Manager Tony Carlin, Head of Emergency Response said; “Bad parking is a real problem for firefighters. Fire engines require a gap of almost 3 meters to get through. We appreciate that people like to park as close to their property as possible, but please think could a fire engine or other emergency vehicle get through the gap.  With every second counting when attending a fire or road crash it is vital that they can get down streets quickly and safely.”