There are hopes that grassroots efforts to fund Aberdeen’s new air ambulance could soon spread across the North Sea.
The Crisps For Helimed 79 campaign has its first collection point offshore on Repsol Sinopec’s Piper platform.
Organisers have been able to claim money for the cause through a returns scheme with Walkers. The campaign has enjoyed viral success on social media in aid of Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance.
The Piper collection started after members of the catering staff, working for Sodexo, saw coverage in The Press And Journal.
Buckie woman Donna Stewart said: “It seemed a great thing to get behind because we were already recycling crisp bags and trying to return them to Walkers.
“But the collections have really taken off since we started supporting collecting for Helimed 79 and we’re really proud to be supporting such a great cause.”
Along with two of her fellow environmental reps, the 33-year-old has put up posters and collection points all over the platform.
They plan to send back jam-packed bin bags of crisp packets to shore. And preparations are well underway for Helimed 79’s take-off in March.
SCAA’s EC135 T2e helicopter is currently being refreshed and upgraded for its new role and work has begun to transform a hangar at Aberdeen airport into its operations base.
The charity has signed up Babcock to fly and maintain its second copter and has already begun hiring paramedics and pilots to carry out their life-saving missions.
Ms Stewart’s colleague Dennis McDermott said, despite living in Glasgow, it is easy to see the support and need for the new air ambulance.
The 55-year-old added: “It has already spread to the Fulmar and Clyde platforms and I have sent a letter to all other Repsol Sinopec sites asking them to collect too.
“Local people can see the benefit SCAA’s helicopter will bring.”
Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance has made a huge impact since 2013, saving lives and preventing suffering.
That is why the P&J campaigned successfully for SCAA’s second helicopter to be based in our region.
The countdown is now on for the aircraft – call sign Helimed 79 – to start flying missions from Aberdeen Airport.
But this is an emergency service that relies entirely on donations.
Each call-out costs about £2,500 and SCAA needs P&J readers to help hit its £6million target and get things off to a successful start.
So please do anything you can to raise those funds and show that We’re Backing Helimed 79.
Ways to donate to SCAA
- Website: www.scaa.org.uk/donate
- Text: Text ‘SCAA’ and the amount to 70085
- Phone: 03001231111
- Cheques: Made payable to ‘SCAA’ or ‘Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance’ and sent to: Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance (SCAA), The Control Tower, Perth Airport, Scone, PH2 6PL