Air Ambulance: Why you should volunteer
PUBLISHED: 17:12 27 June 2019 | UPDATED: 12:46 28 June 2019
Essex & Herts Air Ambulance (EHAAT) attended over 1,400 cases last year alone. Jane Morton, Volunteer Manager at EHAAT suggests how you can become a part of the team and help to save lives.
Charity volunteering: Where can I help?
The distinctive red and yellow helicopters and rapid response vehicles of Essex & Herts Air Ambulance are instantly recognisable as they head to incidents across Hertfordshire and Essex. The service's dedicated expert medical teams attend emergency call outs. They administer life-saving treatment that patients otherwise wouldn't receive until they arrived at a hospital. "Volunteering for the Air Ambulance charity is vital to funding the £750,000 monthly running costs. We need this to sustain our work across both counties," said Jane.
How can volunteer work benefit you?
Volunteering can look good to prospective employers as it can show that you spend your free time well. It's also a good way to get involved in your local community and meet new people. There is also plenty of flexibility on how often you volunteer and when, so you can make it fit in with your schedule.
How can I support Essex & Herts Air Ambulance?
There are many ways you can volunteer for Essex and Herts Air Ambulance. Through September's National Air Ambulance Week, there are many fund raising events and collections. Click here to find one near you and join in. Raffles and the 'Flight for Life' Lottery also help keep the life-saving service operational.
"This October a group of fearless supporters are challenging themselves to walk along one of the world's greatest landmarks: the Great Wall of China," said Jane.
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There are also seasonal fund raising events you can get involved with. Over the Christmas period, supporters arrange festive fund raising activities like carol concerts and Christmas jumper days. Volunteers come along to have fun and help a good cause. There are many opportunities to partake in organised fund raising events, or organise your own; like Helen Weston from St Albans.
In February 2018 Helen was moments away from finishing a long bike ride when she was hit by a car. A land ambulance and an EHAAT air ambulance responded to an emergency call. On their arrival, Helen was semi-conscious, disorientated and agitated. The Air Ambulance was able to get her to hospital in 11 minutes, which would have taken much longer by road. EHAAT's critical care team provided Helen with strong sedatives and anaesthetic to calm her. They then gave Helen oxygen to protect her brain from further damage and flew her to the nearest major trauma centre at the Royal London Hospital. Helen had four broken bones in her face and skull, a broken left wrist and was covered in cuts and bruises. After leaving the hospital, Helen visited the EHAAT Air base at North Weald.
Helen already supported Essex & Herts Air Ambulance and said: "After what EHAAT has done for me, I plan to continue supporting it. I managed to raise £350 on the anniversary of my accident. I also held 'A Very British Afternoon Tea', one of the charity's fund raising initiatives, raising a further £558. Every little bit can help."
Essex & Herts Air Ambulance is a charity that provides helicopter emergency medical services for the critically ill and injured of Essex, Hertfordshire and surrounding areas. In 2018 the charity's critical care team attended to 1,491 patients. They work closely with publicly-funded emergency services, but unlike them, EHAAT is a charity that receives no direct funding from central government.
"As a result, we depend on the goodwill of people and businesses to keep it running and saving lives," said Jane.
The service operates seven days a week from 7 am to 9 pm and after sunset the critical care team continue to respond to any calls that come through using rapid response vehicles.
To find out how you can get involved as a volunteer email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0345 2417 690