South Western Ambulance Charity

Community Response Vehicles Appeal

Help us fund 7 new dedicated Community Response Vehicles so that volunteer Community First Responders can better work alongside our ambulances, providing life-saving support to emergency patients across the South West.
raised of £210,000 target
RCN 1049230

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We urgently need your help to raise £210,000 to provide 7 new Community Response Vehicles, one for each of our 7 operational areas across the South West.

Community First Responders (CFRs) in the South West

In 2023/24 volunteer Community First Responders (CFRs) attended 20,611 patients who had called 999.

At 9% of those incidents they were the only resource required, so helping to make ambulances available for other higher priority, life threatening calls.

5,502 of the incidents attended by CFRs were the highest priority calls where every second counts.

Community First Responders (CFRs) volunteer in their communities, often providing early lifesaving emergency aid ahead of ambulance arrival. Their contributions really do save lives, reduce pain and provide reassurance to patients and their families.

Volunteer CFRs are recruited, trained and supported by the South Western Ambulance Service. They carry a defibrillator, oxygen, full clinical observation kit together with equipment to manage severe bleeding. Many also carry a lifting chair to assist fallen patients off of the floor in advance of an ambulance.

CFRS wear ambulance uniform and generally use their own cars to respond to patients.

The Need for Community Response Vehicles

A dedicated CFR car;

- increases the number of patients that CFRs support

- increases the number of hours that CFRs volunteer

- provides a very visible response to patients waiting for help

- makes it easier and quicker for ambulance crews to find an address

- makes volunteering an option for those who don't have access to a car

- helps the South Western Ambulance Service recruit more volunteer CFRs

Each dedicated car will be converted to meet CFR needs including adding further lighting, load guards and bespoke telecommunications. Equipment will include a full medical kit bag, a defibrillator, oxygen and a Raizer Lifting Chair.

A South Western Ambulance Service crew member said: “We don’t have to search for the house when you’re there. It saves time – we can see the CFR Car from miles away!”

Volunteer Community First Responder Alexander from Dorset has used a sign-written Dacia Duster car and said: “These cars have added a completely new dimension to how we can support our front-line colleagues and therefore our communities.”

Any donation you can give, or fundraising activity you can organise, will really make a big difference. Don't forget to aid Gift Aid if you are a UK tax-payer so we can add 25p extra to every £1 donated.


If the amount raised here should exceed the costs of the proposed purchase, conversion and equipping of the CRVs then any overspend will be used to support the vital work of CFRs across the South West.

About the charity

South Western Ambulance Charity

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RCN 1049230
The South Western Ambulance Charity uses gifted monies to go the extra mile for those in our communities who use our service and to improve the welfare of the staff and volunteers of the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust.

Donation summary

Total raised
+ £5.00 Gift Aid
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