StreetDoctors—teaching first aid to young offenders
StreetDoctors is a voluntary organisation that teaches young offenders what to do at the scene of a stabbing
- By: Sally Carter, technical editor, BMJ
“It varies between groups, but usually when they come in they’re hoods up, headphones in, arms folded, and you’re thinking ‘uh oh,’” says Charlotte Neary-Bremer, a doctor and chief executive officer of the voluntary organisation StreetDoctors. She is describing those attending StreetDoctors’ first aid classes. She goes on to say that when you tell the class who you are and why you are there things change. “Once they know that they could save a friend’s life or one of their family they generally engage really well.”
The classes Neary-Bremer describes are run by three volunteer doctors or medical students, who teach six to 12 young people from youth offender groups. StreetDoctors began classes in Liverpool but now runs sessions in Manchester, Nottingham, Sheffield, and London. The organisation has taught more than 1400 young offenders how to save lives.
The class begins by asking the group about their experiences—if they’ve