A woman who works tirelessly to boost heart attack survival rates in West Dunbartonshire has won a top national award.

Sheenah Nelson is being honoured by Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland with a prestigious Champions of Change award.

Champions of Change are part of Rotary’s Champions Awards, held annually to recognise the outstanding and inspirational humanitarian and community service of volunteers from around the country.

Sheenah, a member of Helensburgh Garelochside Rotary Club, is among 12 winners who will receive their awards at a ceremony in Birmingham on Saturday, May 2 as part of Volunteer Expo, the UK’s new, national show to inspire people to get involved in volunteering.

Sheenah is being recognised for showing huge dedication to the community by campaigning to make the public aware of the need to take action and improve survival rates following heart attacks and cardiac arrests.

Previously, in West Dunbartonshire and Helensburgh, the chance of surviving cardiac arrests was poor with a limited programme of training in preventative skills.

Sheenah personally leads training sessions each week, and arranges fundraising for purchasing and maintaining community defibrillators.

Since 2016, over 5,000 people in this area have been trained to deliver cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and use the 200 defibrillators that have been installed.

People trained by this project have saved 22 lives that otherwise may have been lost.

Sheenah told the Advertiser: "I am delighted to receive this award which came as quite a surprise.

"It's not just for me, but for all of the Heartstart Helensburgh Garelochside team."

Sheenah, who was awarded the BEM in 2018, said the success of the defibrillator programme was down to the vital support of individuals, groups and business in the area who had helped fund the devices.

The search for this year’s winners was carried out across Rotary’s network of over 1,700 clubs, with Rotary members and also members of the public having their extraordinary work recognised.

This ranged from fitting prosthetic limbs on amputees in Pakistan to supporting adults with learning difficulties gain employment opportunities.

Donna Wallbank, president of Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland, said: "The Champions Awards is about giving those who pioneer, lead and support some amazing volunteering projects the recognition they deserve.

“The selfless and truly life-changing impact of our champions really demonstrates how we can make a difference and touch people’s lives.

“Sheenah’s work is invaluable in educating the community about responding to heart attacks and cardiac arrests.

"She is a very worthy recipient of one of this year’s awards.”

Sheenah added: “The training we deliver is linked to the Scottish Government’s ‘Save a Life for Scotland’ strategy for out of hospital cardiac arrest, which, since 2015 has resulted in 520,302 people across Scotland being trained in CPR.

"The result of this strategy is that the survival rate for cardiac arrest has improved from 1 in 20 to 1 in 12 - very real progress in saving lives.”