City of Coffs Harbour donates defibrillator for Eastern Dorrigo community

City of Coffs Harbour Mayor Paul Amos delivers the new defibrillator to Shelley Kleinhans, Glenice Miller and Marjorie Inglis, members of the Community Defib Project.

CAMP Creek Road, up the mountain in Eastern Dorrigo, will have an automated external defibrillator (AED) installed thanks to a donation from the City of Coffs Harbour (CoCH).

The AED is a medical device designed to analyse the heart rhythm and deliver an electric shock to victims of ventricular fibrillation to restore the heart rhythm to normal.

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“It truly is a lifesaver,” said local Community First Responder Shelley Kleinhans.

“As a First Responder on the mountain, I understand the critical role a community-accessible defibrillator plays,” Shelley told News Of The Area.

“In fact, research shows that with every minute that goes by during a sudden cardiac arrest without a defibrillator, the victim’s chance of survival is reduced by seven to ten percent.”

Through her NSW Ambulance volunteer role, Shelley became aware of the Community Defib Project, a not-for-profit organisation that assists communities to fundraise, install and maintain community-accessible defibrillators.

“With help from a small group of local ladies we started fundraising,” Shelley said.

“Soon our goal of one defib grew to seven, to ensure our dispersed community could access a defib if needed,” she said.

Each defibrillator costs around $3,500.

In just under two years the local mountain group was able to raise $24,500 from meat raffles, trivia nights, sponsorship from local businesses and generous donations from community members.

Counting the existing defibrillator at the Ulong store, eight defibs were eventually made available across the community.

City of Coffs Harbour approached Shelley in late 2023 with the offer of a ninth defibrillator.

The new defibrillator was handed over on Thursday 15 February by Mayor Paul Amos and will soon be installed on Camp Creek Road, near a cluster of farms and smaller homesteads.

Brenda Mulhearn, a resident of Camp Creek, was very excited to hear that her community would be the recipient of an AED.

“Although we hope the unit is never needed it gives me great peace of mind to know it’s there should any of us need it.”

The nine local AEDs are located at Ulong General Store, Lowanna General Store, Brooklana, Lower Bobo, Moleton, Timmsvale, Bushman’s Range Rd on Eastern Dorrigo Way, Cascade and soon, Camp Creek.

For more information on the Community Defib Project visit


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