Placed on the store façade, the AEDs will be available to local residents 24/7. For this initiative, SPAR stores worked together with non-profit organisation HeartSaver and installation and maintenance company CardioService. The devices have already been installed at a number of SPAR stores, with more to follow in the coming weeks.
“We wanted to give something back to the neighbourhood, so we immediately supported this initiative,” said Wim Ameys, independent retailer running two SPAR stores in Sint-Genesius-Rode and Halle. “The campaign was particularly successful in Sint-Genesius-Rode, mainly thanks to the Red Cross. Some of their employees came to demonstrate how the defibrillator can save lives. We raised more than €3,500 at that store, a fantastic result. With that, we financed the purchase of the device and donated the rest to the local Red Cross branch. At both SPAR stores, we will pay for the electricity and maintenance of both devices,” he concluded.
“We launched our fundraising campaign with a video on social media,” says Pierre Thomas of SPAR Le Roeulx, “It was an immediate success! Instore, all colleagues talked to the customers at the cash register about our fundraiser. Thanks to the generous contributions of our customers, companies and associations in our local community, after just three days we had enough money to buy an AED. And a week later, we even bought a second one which will be installed in the centre of our town,” he added.
Every year in Belgium, around 10,000 people suffer sudden cardiac arrest (cites the Belgian Resuscitation Council). 17% to 30% of these cases occur in a public place (cites the Federal Knowledge Centre for Health, 2017). The use of an automatic external defibrillator (AED) by bystanders increases the victim’s chance of survival.
Source: SPAR Belgium partner Retail Partners Colruyt Group
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SPAR was launched in Belgium in 1947, representing the first step in the international development of the brand. Licences have been granted to SPAR Retail Partners (part of the Colruyt Group) and SPAR Lambrechts NV.
SPAR Retail, which operates both the SPAR and EUROSPAR formats, accounts for over 80% of total SPAR sales generated through a combination of company-owned and independently operated stores. SPAR Lambrechts, on the other hand, supports independent retailers and focuses on serving customers with the SPAR and SPAR Express formats.