A TEENAGE first aider has secured an audience with Princess Anne after helping to save an asthmatic's life.

Freya Demby, from Prestwich, will have the chance to meet the Princess Royal after being named St John Ambulance's regional Cadet of the Year.

The 15-year-old cadet has come to the rescue of several members of the public in need of vital first aid.

She helped to treat runners suffering from exhaustion at the Great Manchester Run and also worked alongside a team of volunteers to save the life of an asthmatic whose inhaler had run out during the Rugby Super League Grand Final.

Freya said: "To win this award is amazing. St John Ambulance is about far more than first aid. Being a cadet also involves being disciplined, never being afraid of a challenge, and always trying your best.

"I have dealt with situations which I would never otherwise have come across, and knowing that I have helped people in a calm and professional way with encouragement from my adult leaders, has been an amazing experience. It hasn’t really sunk in yet!"

To compete for the regional Cadet of the Year title, Freya undertook a series of rigorous challenges, which included delivering presentations on the future of St John Ambulance, being interviewed by the charity’s chief executive, Martin Houghton-Brown, and designing a uniform for space age volunteers.

The Withington Girls' School pupil was one of 32 young people vying for the title during an event held at Eastwood Hall in Nottinghamshire last month.

Her mum Eleanor Demby said: “I’m extremely proud of everything Freya has done — through her involvement with St John, she has gone out and done things that I never thought she would have the confidence to do."

Freya, who was one of six winning cadets, will represent St John Ambulance at ceremonial occasions throughout 2019, including at St Paul’s Cathedral in June, and the annual Young Achievers reception where they will meet Princess Anne, the charity’s Commandant-in-Chief for Youth.

St John Ambulance’s Chief Volunteer Ann Cable said: “Freya is a passionate ambassador for St John Ambulance cadets who will represent her region well, both inside the charity and to the outside world.

“All of the cadets have been fabulous; I’m lucky to work with so many talented young people who have each told their own story – many overcoming personal challenges along the way."

She added: "Our Cadet of the Year competition is always one of the highlights in our calendar and this year's event was truly inspirational – huge congratulations to Freya."

St John Ambulance has just launched a major recruitment drive to expand its youth team following a £560k government grant.

To find out more visit www.sja.org.uk/youthroles.