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Byron Shire
March 3, 2021

Westpac Heli service launches annual appeal

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Dr Keira Hazen and paramedic Ryan Salter are just two of the many who work for the Westpac Rescue Helicopter service. Photo Tree Faerie.

We hear it and we look up and wonder who is inside. This year from January to May, over 500 people have been assisted service-wide by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter, with that number expected to nearly double throughout the upcoming months.

The Westpac Rescue Helicopter has commenced their end of financial year appeal, with a goal of raising $100,000 across the Service’s three operational bases in Lismore, Belmont and Tamworth.

CEO of the Westpac Rescue Helicopter, Richard Jones OAM is encouraging donations of any amount to ensure the Service can continue providing a vital 24/7 emergency service for the people of Northern NSW.

Our community is proud of the service

‘We love how proud our community is of the Rescue Helicopter,’ he says. ‘From the small regional towns to the busy central cities, we are constantly blown away by the outstanding support we continue to receive.

‘Keeping the helicopters flying has always been a team community effort, in which every dollar donated ensures the service can be there when and where it is needed

‘This time of year has traditionally been a busy period for the Service, and we expect 2019 to be no exception.

In 2018 the Lismore based service carried out over 450 missions in the North Coast, Northern Rivers and Coffs Harbour areas. These included: 84 motor vehicle accidents, 65 search and rescues, 207 Inter-Hospital Transfers – assisting the states most unwell patients and a wide variety of other emergency responses to Triple Zero (000) calls.

Missions included flights for babies who are just moments old, through to people requiring urgent specialist medical treatment or trauma assistance, search and rescues in the bush and out at sea and winch extractions from tough terrain.

The best possible treatment

‘The missions we get called to are diverse and every day is different,’ says Jones. ‘But no matter what the situation the community can be assured that our aircrew and medical team will provide the best possible treatment at the scene and continuing in flight on the way to the most appropriate emergency department.’

Since 1982 the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter has relied on community support and in 2019 the Service’s End of Financial Year Appeal is an important part of their annual fundraising program.

‘Every dollar donated towards our appeal will stay locally and will help us to continue saving lives,’ says Jones.

‘We are the community’s own Rescue Helicopter and while the aircrew are on the front line of this service, their job is only made possible because of the generous people and businesses throughout Northern NSW. The Service cannot thank our community enough for their ongoing support,’

You can help save lives in your local community and reduce your tax bill by making a tax deductible donation before June 30.

To donate or for more information: visit www.helirescue.com.au/appeal or call 1800 155 155.


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