Today your rescue helicopter really needs you to step up and be the hero.
The RACQ CQ Rescue 2017 Annual Appeal kicks off on Monday, May 8 with a fundraising target of $200,000 to help ensure the service can continue to fly to the rescue of hundreds of people across the region every year.
The appeal is the major fundraiser for the Mackay-based rescue helicopter service which completed 573 tasks last year.
RACQ CQ Rescue CEO Ian Rowan said with mission numbers increasing every year, there was a never a greater need for the life-saving service in the region or a better reason to support it.
“2016 was our biggest year on record for the rescue chopper and in 21 years we’ve reached a total of more than 7500 missions,” Mr Rowan said.
It cost about $8.5 million annually to keep the rescue service in the sky saving lives 24/7, 365 days a year, he said, and a large proportion of this money came from community donations, payroll deductions and sponsorship which was why the annual appeal was so important.
“From our base here in Mackay we cover an area four times the size of Tasmania with one primary and one reserve helicopter,” he said.
“This is a not-for-profit service which is absolutely critical to the sick and injured within our community. When every second counts, where would they be without RACQ CQ Rescue?”
RACQ CQ Rescue pilots and aircrewman are also strongly urging people to show their support for the life-saving work conducted by the crew every day and to donate generously to this year’s Annual Appeal.
“Anyone who donates becomes a hero to this organisation - anything we do or any time we fly has the potential to be lifesaving,” RACQ CQ Rescue pilot Greg Webb said.
“Donations are what keeps us flying and you never know when you’re going to need us,” pilot Doug White said. “The next life we help save might be yours or someone that you love.”
“Times are tough and anyone who puts their hand in their pocket are the heroes behind the scenes as they are the reason we are actually in the air and able to help save so many people,” RACQ CQ Rescue aircrewman Shane Bargh said.
An Orica-sponsored corporate launch of the RACQ CQ Rescue 2017 Annual Appeal will take place on Friday, May 5 featuring a special guest speaker and former RACQ CQ Rescue patient Doug Wright.
Donations can be made online at www.cqrescue.org.au/donate or by phoning 4998 5232.