Former NHL star Rich Peverley knows the importance of a defibrillator.

In 2014, Peverley who was playing for the Dallas Stars,  went into cardiac arrest while sitting on the bench during a game. His heart stopped for two minutes.

“Going back and looking at how I was saved … by an AED (automated external defibrillator) and people who knew how to use it,” said Peverley.

It was with this in mind that Rich Peverley and his wife Nathalie came up with Pevs Protects, a charity that will see AED’s placed in high traffic areas.

“We want to save other lives by having people learn how to use an AED and place them more around the community.”

They are launching Pevs Protects in their home town of Guelph at the Guelph Storm game Friday night.

“They are expensive so the more money we fundraise the more we will be able to place them around," Peverley said.

Peverley, who’s career includes a Stanley Cup victory with the Boston Bruins, says he was lucky because of the quick response and know-how of those on the scene. He believes that if more people know how to use the defibrillators, more lives can be saved.

“Unfortunately there is 40,000 cardiac arrests a year  in Canada and I believe that fewer than 10 per cent will survive,” he said, “If we can get more people out there that know how to use them, I feel that we will be able to make a difference.”

Pevs Protects has teamed up with the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

At the Storm game an instructor will be on hand teaching people how to use the AED.

“It’s really very easy to use, they are very simply, they (the AED machine) basically walk you through the whole process and that’s what we’re trying to encourage; more and more people to become trained on AED’s and CPR because it really is a lifesaving skill everyone should have,” said Heart and Stroke Area Manager Sara Felske .

Peverley hopes to expand Pevs Protect across Ontario.

They are hosting a Pevs Protects night in Dallas later this year. The Kitchener Rangers have also taken up the challenge for next hockey season. They will host a game to raise funds for AED’s through Pevs Protects that will benefit Kitchener-Waterloo.