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Guest Blog: Mynd o Steddfod i Steddfod

13th June 2018

By Sarah Cutting, Community Engagement Officer for St John Cymru

I’ve just finished working at the Urdd Eisteddfod in Builth Wells, where we spent a week talking about our history and celebrating our centenary with the public. I’m taking a little time to reflect on the experiences I had whilst there and wanted to share them with you all…

It was a tremendous event. The sun was shining, despite a forecast of torrential rain, the Eisteddfod participants talent was off the scale and it seemed like everyone had a great time. We were joined on our stand for the whole week by one of our volunteers Michael Morgans MBE who went to work giving first aid demonstrations – we were able to give a whopping 440 demonstrations throughout the week! That’s a lot of people who’ve learnt the vital skills they need to save a life. Michael also became our resident media presenter, which I know he enjoyed immensely, representing the organisation on various radio and television items alongside some of our Cadets.

Throughout the week Bertie Badger made a few appearances and had a hoot meeting all the children (and a couple of adults!). He won at hook-a-duck in the fair, met fellow mascots from other organisations, ordered some chocolate strawberries when he got a bit peckish, brushed up on his CPR skills, and even hitchhiked a lift in one of the event buggies when he got too hot to walk back to the shelter! Through funding from the Heritage Lottery, we’ve been able to create a history display including boards detailing our story, photographs of the great work that St John Cymru has done over the last 100 years, and a display of historical first aid items; a training skeleton and a porcelain urinal were some of the items that caused a stir amongst some youngsters! Of course, our wonderful centenary ambulance was with us and enjoyed by many of the young revellers – our ears got a bit of a bashing from the horn… but that didn’t put a stop to our fun!

It was a tough week for all involved with early starts and late finishes, and whilst I am absolutely exhausted after working 6 days away from home, I am still a little overwhelmed by the wonderful people I met and worked with over the week. As it was Volunteers’ Week last week, I think it is entirely fitting to talk about the work of our volunteers, and their passion for both the organisation and the welfare of their communities which has been truly exposed to me over this week. I could not have attempted running our stand without their help. Whether it was travelling for miles to help man the Eisteddfod stand, assisting with Bertie in the immense heat, helping to manoeuvre the centenary ambulance or Cadets and Badgers handing out flyers and giving CPR demonstrations; nothing was too much trouble for our amazing volunteers and I am eternally grateful for all of their help! All alongside doing the event duty work and ensuring there was first aid available to every visitor. Our volunteers have worked endlessly – travelling a couple of hours there and back each day from their homes in order to support our cause and ensure that the visitors to the Urdd were kept safe. I commend them.

It is safe to say we all had a great time, promoting St John heritage, and my Welsh has certainly improved! Hopefully, we will have many more great times at the other events we have scheduled over the summer and you might be able to join in the fun and spot our centenary ambulance on tour! If so, don't forget to tag us in your pictures and use our dedicated hashtag #SJCW100!  

Find out more about our centenary at: www.stjohn.wales/100

  • Guest Blog: Mynd o Steddfod i Steddfod

  • 13th June 2018
  • Our Community Engagement Officer, Sarah reflects upon her week-long centenary celebration at the Urdd Eisteddfod...

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  • 27th April 2018
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  • Sam Warburton receives St John honour

  • 17th April 2018
  • Welsh Rugby Player, Sam Warburton OBE has been invested as a Member of the Order of St John.

  • CEO Blog: Of downtime and doodles

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  • Volunteers were at the gates of the Principality Stadium collecting donations ahead of the Wales v Italy match.

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  • 22nd February 2018
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  • 16th February 2018
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  • 9th February 2018
  • In her latest blog Chief Executive, Julia Hobbs, writes about a sense of belonging and being 'One of the family'.

  • CEO Blog: 'Age is just a number'

  • 2nd February 2018
  • Hear from our Chief Executive, Julia Hobbs, about how 'age is just a number' when it comes to saving a life.

  • Former ‘SuperTed’ animator designs new youth mascot

  • 29th January 2018
  • Members of the original team behind the 1980s TV series – SuperTed – are developing an animated film featuring a new-look Bertie Badger.

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  • 26th January 2018
  • Chief Executive, Julia Hobbs, shares her experience of learning CPR and what it means outside of the training room.

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  • 17th January 2018
  • Hear from our new Chief Executive, Julia Hobbs, as she writes about the power of volunteering.

  • Hundreds attend carol concert for St John Eye Hospital

  • 19th December 2017
  • Around 300 people gathered at the City Parish Church of St John the Baptist in Cardiff to raise money for the St John of Jerusalem Eye Hospital.

  • Volunteers prepare to ease pressure of festive demand

  • 18th December 2017
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  • St John Cymru young achievers attend Royal reception

  • 23rd November 2017
  • Badgers, cadets and young adults from St John Cymru-Wales were recognised for their outstanding achievements at a special reception.

  • Cadet Charlie wins ‘Diana Award’ for work in the community

  • 20th November 2017
  • 16-year-old Charlie Marsh was given the award in recognition of the 800 hours he's given up to perform first aid duties and to fundraise within his community.

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  • 10th November 2017
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  • 8th November 2017
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  • New Chief Executive appointed at St John Cymru-Wales

  • 2nd November 2017
  • St John Cymru-Wales has appointed Julia Hobbs as its new Chief Executive, with effect from 2nd January 2018.

  • Gwent church hosts special St John Cymru-Wales service

  • 30th October 2017
  • A special service was held in Abergavenny on Saturday (28th October) to install a Chancellor of the Order of St John and a new Commissioner for St John Cymru-Wales in Gwent.

  • Volunteer trainers learn vital new skills at annual conference

  • 24th October 2017
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  • Organ donors honoured for the gift of life

  • 10th October 2017
  • Relatives of individuals who have saved lives through organ donation were honoured at a special awards ceremony in Cardiff, on Monday 9th October.

  • Runners line up in yellow to raise money for St John Cymru

  • 29th September 2017
  • More than 30 runners will be pulling on a bright yellow vest as they take part in the Cardiff Half Marathon to raise money for St John Cymru-Wales.

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  • 27th September 2017
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  • 25th September 2017
  • Team completes Welsh 3 Peaks Challenge to raise money for St John Cymru Wales

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  • 24th September 2017
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  • 8th September 2017
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  • ‘Save a Life September’ campaign aims to train an extra 5,000 lifesavers

  • 1st September 2017
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  • 17th August 2017
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  • 16th August 2017
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  • 11th August 2017
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  • Volunteers keep Eisteddfod visitors safe day and night

  • 11th August 2017
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  • 9th August 2017
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  • Volunteers complete 200,000 hours of service

  • 3rd August 2017
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  • 3rd August 2017
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  • Volunteers gearing up to help Velothon cyclists

  • 7th July 2017
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  • Freemasons fund new ambulance for Haverfordwest

  • 3rd July 2017
  • A 56-thousand-pound grant, from West Wales Freemasons, has funded a new ambulance for the Haverfordwest Division.

  • Welsh volunteers share skills with colleagues from Hong Kong

  • 27th June 2017
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  • 6th June 2017
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  • Chair of St John Council for Mid Glamorgan welcomes HRH The Duchess of Gloucester

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St John Cymru Wales
Priory House,
Beignon Close,
Ocean Way,
Cardiff
CF24 5PB

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Company number 5071073
Registered in England & Wales
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