For me, Merdeka Day is usually a day of going out somewhere nice and spending some quality time with my family. However, this year’s Merdeka day was unlike any other and truly a memorable one.
After speaking to a friend, I came to know about the “Keep the Heart Beating” event which aimed to raise awareness on the importance of CPR. I was intrigued by the concept of the event, which was to educate the public on how to perform CPR. Thereafter, they would have to keep the dummy’s heart beating by performing this life saving skill and be a part of history as a participant in Malaysia’s first and largest CPR relay.
Prior to the event, we attended a one day briefing where all the volunteers of the event met for the first time. It was indeed heartwarming to see different individuals coming together but each with, I believe, the same desire to educate the public on the importance of CPR.
At 7.30am on the 31st of August 2016, the day of the event, we congregated at Atria Shopping Gallery. To be honest, I was quite apprehensive that morning, not knowing if the long day ahead would eventually get to me and if I could then, keep myself motivated. My worries were put at ease after seeing the determined and bright smiles etched on the faces of my fellow volunteers. Being surrounded amongst all the positive energy emitting from the other volunteers was enough to keep me in high spirits.
The volunteers who dutifully executed their jobs on that day showcased the importance of teamwork in ensuring the event ran smoothly. It did not matter whatever the job scope was, whether it was to teach the participants CPR using the dummy or simply flipping the charts to keep count of the number of participants. Without one or the other, the event may not have ran as smoothly as it did. This made me more appreciative of my role as a team member.
It’s true that time always seems to pass by quicker when you’re having fun. It was a joy and inspiration to see Malaysians from all walks of life showing up in full force for this event with the hopes of equipping themselves with a skill they can perhaps, one day use to help someone in need.
By the end of the day, we managed to achieve and even surpassed our target of 1500 participants. This could not have been a reality if it weren’t for the unwavering dedication shown by the committee members, the unrelenting hardwork of the volunteers and last but not least, the amazing support of the Malaysian public.
What may have taken a few hours of their time today may in future, save someone’s life in a heartbeat (pun intended). In the words of Ronald Reagan, “We can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone.”