Funds fly high for RFDS

THE dedicated local group of volunteers at the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) Jamestown and District Support Group has raised a total of $10,000 for the RFDS over the past year.
The funds were raised by the group participating in local events to raise funds, including working at the Wine Bar at the Jamestown Ram and Ewe Ball, the Jamestown AirShow and also local meal drops.
President of the RFDS Jamestown and District Support Group, Rick Kelly said the organisation is extremely important to the local community.
“The RFDS lands three times a week in the Mid North to airlift patients to Adelaide for life-saving surgery or specialist medical treatment,” Mr Kelly said.
“Over the past year, the RDFS has landed once a week in Jamestown alone.
“Those of us living in the country are all too familiar with the tyranny of distance and the importance of access to specialist care in times of medical emergency.
“The RFDS provides this vital access, not just of those living in the Mid North, but to more than 15 South Australians every day-in the outback, from the regions and in the city alike,” Mr Kelly said.
Since the group’s donation last year, the RFDS has introduced to operational services the RFDS Medi-Jet 24, South Australia’s first purpose-built aeromedical jet. 
The $13 million aircraft was funded solely by bequests, sponsorships and donations from the community.
“We feel very humbled to have played our part with others in raising the funds for the RFDS to purchase the ultimate ‘flying intensive care unit’, capable of slashing total mission times of long-haul patient evacuations from the outback or interstate to specialist medical care,” Mr Kelly said.
“I extend my sincere thanks to every member of the RFDS Jamestown and District Support Group for their hard work and commitment, and to our local community for their on-going support of our fundraising activities. So much can be achieved when people work together for a common goal.”
At the group’s AGM on Monday, November 1, the $10,000 donation was presented by Rick Kelly to Lindy Allchurch, volunteer coordinator of RFDS Central Operation.
Lindy was extremely impressed by the local efforts in Jamestown.
“This year’s donation takes the group’s total contribution to the Flying Doctor to more than $140,000 since it began fundraising in 2010, which is a remarkable achievement,” Ms Allchurch said.
“The latest donation, like those before, will be used to help meet the shortfall in our operational funding and to finance our capital-raising program for the purchase of our ‘flying intensive care units’, the next to arrive late this year.
“On behalf of everyone at RFDS, and the thousands of South Australians we airlift each year, we offer our heartfelt thanks for your hard work and service to your local community,” Ms Allchurch said.
The RFDS Jamestown and District Support Group always welcomes new enquiries to get involved.