Powerful campaign pays
tribute to the young faces behind sudden cardiac death
Midlands Launch - 13th March 2009
from Birmingham and across the Midlands joined together at a
poignant event on Friday 13th March, as they helped to launch a
major regional campaign to highlight shocking new statistics that show
the number of young people who lose their lives to the tragic condition
sudden cardiac death now stands at 12 every week – a staggering 50% rise
on previous estimates.
launches of the
CRY '12 a week'
new figures are based on official statistics [ONS 2006] citing the cause
of sudden death among people aged 35 and under.
poster-sized version of an emotive new postcard - featuring the
photos of 12 young people from the Midlands region who lost their lives
suddenly to previously undetected heart conditions – was unveiled at
the ceremony at Eastwood Hall in Nottingham.
campaign (which first started in 2004 to promote the fact that 8 young
deaths were, at the time, estimated every week), was recently
re-launched at a national event at Westminster, supported by the
charity’s latest patron, James Cracknell OBE.
the results of a new survey, commissioned by CRY, showed
people living in the Midlands are the least likely to be aware that a
simple test known as an ECG can detect potentially fatal heart
conditions in young people. Only 58% (compared to 71% in Scotland) knew
about the availability of this type of screening.
The families of the 12 young people who appear on the
postcard, were all in attendance at the event – along with local MPs –
paying tribute to the children and partners who all lost their lives so
suddenly and tragically.
It is now widely accepted that screening
saves lives. CRY is committed to encouraging greater access to cardiac
testing for all groups and individuals (but especially those involved in
sport at ‘grass-roots level) to detect conditions that might otherwise
Executive and Founder of the charity, Alison Cox MBE, says; “We feel
– as the recorded incidence of sudden cardiac death rises – it is time
re-launch this powerful campaign in the Midlands to help emphasise the
importance of screening and the fact that so many of these tragic cases
affecting fit and healthy young people could have been prevented.”
“These 12 faces are
just a “snap-shot” of the problem and we need to keep up the pressure
and engage support from as many MPs as possible to make sure we can
prevent other families from experiencing similar tragedies.”
month, hundreds of postcards will be distributed by CRY families and
supporters to people across the Midlands urging them to send it back to
their local MP. It is hoped the influx of postcards will encourage MPs
to add their support to the campaign and join the Cardiac Risk in the
Young All Party Parliamentary Group.
Alison adds; “We already have strong
support from MPs in the Midlands region – many of whom have been deeply
moved by a death of a young person in their constituency and have
pledged to support us in our ongoing work and awareness raising
“We’re therefore confident that this
latest campaign will help us to target those MPs who are not yet aware
of our commitment to preventing further needless deaths across their
region as well as spreading our important educational messages to
parents and young people living in the Midlands.”
New cards will be launched regularly over
the next 18 months, portraying victims from 12 different regions across
information or to arrange an interview with the [name] family or a local
MP who is currently a member of the CRY All Party Parliamentary Group
please call: THE CRY PRESS OFFICE: JO HUDSON OR
HEATHER CHURCHOUSE ON 020 8786 3860 / 0770 948 7959:
Media coverage of this launch