The annual fundraising appeal for the Northland Rescue Helicopter service has launched this week with local electricity lines companies Northpower and Top Energy keen to match public donations dollar for dollar up to $200k.
The 2019 appeal raised just under $250k and general manager of the service, Vanessa Furze, is hoping to raise a similar amount again in 2020.
“It’s been a challenging year for us all and to top it off, we are tracking for our busiest year on record which will see us fly close to 1000 missions this year.
“As our mission numbers increase, our operational costs grow higher, so we rely on donations from members of the public.”
Northpower chief executive Andrew McLeod says the annual fundraising campaign is a good reminder of how important the Northland Rescue Helicopter service is to the Northland community.
“It is very reassuring to know that we have a world class air ambulance service right here on our door step, ready to save lives 24/7.
“We see and hear the choppers all the time and everyone knows someone who has been helped by the service. That’s why we are such passionate supporters because they are a lifeline for us all – and not just for Northlanders but for visitors to our region.”
His sentiments are echoed by Russell Shaw – Top Energy’s chief executive.
“Like Northpower, Top Energy has sponsored the service since day one back in 1988 and I have experienced many occasions where it has helped our staff, friends and family.
“With the expanse of rural land and coastline that is Northland, it really is critical we have this service to get people to a place of safety with speed. Getting to people in the golden hour really does save lives,” says Mr Shaw.
The appeal will be supported by a number of community fundraisers, along with an all-day breakfast show on More FM Northland when John, Flash and Toast will go back into lockdown for 12 hours.
§ To donate to More FM’s All-Day Breakfast Show, visit givealittle.co.nz and simply search for ‘91.6 FM’. The 2020 fundraising appeal finishes in mid-December. Follow the campaign at facebook.com/northland.rescuehelicopter.
Northland Rescue Helicopter ambassador Monique Bradley has her own rescue story to tell.