The Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service launches its annual financial year appeal

You can help: The Hastings branch of the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Services fundraising arm. Photo: supplied
You can help: The Hastings branch of the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Services fundraising arm. Photo: supplied

The Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service has launched its end of financial year appeal.

All funds raised from the appeal go toward ensuring the service is available 24 hours and is free.

The fundraising is even more important through the winter months, said CEO Richard Jones.

"Last year, some 449 people were assisted by the community’s own Westpac Rescue Helicopter, during the months of June, July and August," he said.

"We are predicting another busy winter ahead.

“Traditionally this is a busy time of year for the service, last June we were called to 132 missions across our three bases in Newcastle, Tamworth and Lismore. 

"That is an average of four missions per day,” he said.

Missions included motor vehicle, motorbike and quad bike accidents, search and rescues, urgent inter-hospital transfers, farming accidents and neonatal transfers. 

People were assisted from a diverse range of locations, spanning from north of the Hawkesbury River, right up to the Queensland border, Mr Jones said.

Donations are welcome before June 30, the CEO said.

Since 1975 the Westpac Rescue Helicopter has relied on community support. And in 2018 our End of Financial Year Appeal is an important part of our annual fundraising program.

Richard Jones

“Since 1975 the Westpac Rescue Helicopter has relied on community support. And in 2018 our End of Financial Year Appeal is an important part of our annual fundraising program. 

Small or large, every amount donated will stay locally and will help to ensure that the Rescue Helicopter can continue to fly 24-7 as a free service."

By the end of the year, the service is expected to assist close to 2000 people, and not one of those people assisted will have to pay to use this vital service.

“Whilst the Rescue Helicopter crew are on the front line of the service, their job is only made possible because of the generous people and businesses throughout Northern NSW. 

"We are ever so grateful for the continued support we receive and cannot thank our community enough for helping us to continue our life saving work,” Mr Jones said.

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

Visit www.rescuehelicopter.com.au/eofy-appeal or call the service on 1800 155 155.

Locally, the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service - Hastings Support Group is responsible for ongoing fundraising efforts.