The Westpac Rescue Helicopter provides a vital service to the people of New England and relies heavily on the generosity of communities to ensure no one ever pays to be assisted.
The Service has received a welcome financial boost this month when their Gunnedah-based support group took out the major prize as part of the June #GreaterNewEngland community funding program.
Gunnedah Volunteer Support Group will receive $3,000, which, along with other funds they raise during the year, will go towards covering the operational costs of running the service in the region.
Since 2000, the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service has provided aeromedical search, rescue and inter-hospital transfers to care for communities across the New England region. The funds raised by the support group ensure this vital service remains in operation and free of charge to patients.
Over the past 20 years, the Gunnedah Volunteer Support Group has raised approximately $490,000 to support the service, however, according to President, Robin Capp, their recent funding efforts have been hampered due to COVID-19 restrictions.
“It’s almost impossible to organise fundraising activities at the moment so we are extremely grateful to the Greater Bank for their support through the #GreaterNewEngland funding program,” Robin said.
“This funding will make a huge difference to the vital service provided by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter and ensures they can keep the lights on and continue helping those in need.”
Greater Bank’s Regional Manager, Jennifer Smith, said she was proud to see the #GreaterNewEngland funding program supporting a life saving service such as the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.
“As a customer-owned bank we have a strong commitment to supporting the communities that support us and the #GreaterNewEngland funding program is a wonderful example of this philosophy,” said Ms. Smith.
“Since 2016 we have been providing these relatively small but significant funding contributions to a wide range of beneficiaries, such as schools, sporting clubs, health and community support groups, as well as arts and cultural groups.” | Jennifer Smith, Regional Manager.
Both runners up of the June funding round, Tamworth Can Assist and Manilla Rural Fire Brigade will each receive a $1000 grant to go towards supporting operational costs.
The July round of the #GreaterNewEngland program is now open with G.S. Kidd Memorial School, Computerbank New England and Country Education Foundation, Gunnedah each vying for a share in the $5000 funding.
The public can cast their vote online here or by visiting a Greater Bank branch. Voting closes at 5pm on Wednesday July 29, 2020.