This winter, our companions and staff team will be taking on personal challenges to raise money for a defibrillator in the Stokes Croft area of Bristol – and they need your help!

For Emmaus Bristol’s Lifesaving Challenge, companion Simon will be walking three miles every day, Richard will be walking to work, Peter and PJ will be cycling to work, and Gianni, who has smoked for 47 years, is giving up. Our Support Team Manager, Fran will be running a half marathon daily for three months and Premises Officer, Taylor, is taking on the Three Peak challenge.

Why a defibrillator? In the UK, only 10% of people who suffer cardiac arrest outside of a hospital survive, partly because CPR and defibrillation are not started quickly enough. Stokes Croft acts as a hub for the homeless, and sadly in 2019 there were an estimated 23 deaths of homeless people in the Bristol area. We want to ensure that there is an accessible defibrillator in Stokes Croft to help reduce local deaths and save lives, for both the homeless and wider communities in the area.

Companion Simon said:

“I am walking 3 miles each day from December to March. Walking has helped me stay healthy, even when I was homeless. Now that I am safe and well, I want to help other people. There are lots of homeless people in the area we are in, and a defibrillator could really help them or anyone!”

Fran, our Support Team Manager, said:

“I am going to run or walk a half marathon daily over the next 3 months or an equivalent run and cycle combination. Exercise has always helped me manage congenital heart conditions I have and now I can help other people with heart problems by doing this. It will be a challenge but focusing on something like this over the cold dark months will keep me on track mentally and physically.”

The team is determined to raise £1,400 for the defibrillator and £300 for training. Any donation, however small, is greatly appreciated and can be made on our JustGiving page, found here:

Want to get involved with your own challenge? Please join us! All you need to do is pick your challenge, set up your JustGiving page under the Emmaus Bristol Lifesaving Challenge page and get fundraising for a defibrillator in Stokes Croft!

Throughout the challenge, we will be updating our social media pages on each person’s progress and the trials and tribulations that they experience in trying so make sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, TikTok and Instagram.