Emergency fundraising appeal launched by air ambulance service - 'Never in our 30-year history have we had to call on public support with this urgency'

CEO David Welch said it the most important appeal KSS has ever launchedCEO David Welch said it the most important appeal KSS has ever launched
CEO David Welch said it the most important appeal KSS has ever launched | other
“Never in our 30-year history have we had to call on public support with this urgency.”

Those were the words of the CEO of Air Ambulance Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS), which has launched an emergency appeal in an attempt to raise £535,000 during the coronavirus pandemic.

KSS said it needs funding to ensure it can continue to provide ‘world-class fast-response medical care’ to the ‘sickest and most critically injured’.

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The charity is also working alongside the NHS and South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) to transfer critically ill coronavirus patients between hospitals in its local regions.

A spokesperson said: The KSS Coronavirus Emergency Appeal has been triggered by a shortfall in its core funding due to the cancellation of major fundraising events, combined with the increased costs associated with operating a safe service during the pandemic, with full infection prevention controls for its crew, patients and aircraft.

“KSS has needed to invest in specialist equipment and protective wear to ensure its staff have the necessary resources to stay safe and can continue to save as many lives as possible 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

CEO David Welch said it the ‘most important appeal KSS has ever launched’.

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He added: “We are steadfast in our commitment to continuing our primary service at this time and are also fully committed to working on the frontline of the coronavirus pandemic when called to do so, while ensuring the safety of our patients and our crew.

“However, we need help from our inspirational and generous supporters in order to deliver these services.

“Like everyone, we are facing unprecedented times, and fundraising is incredibly challenging.

“As a charity, we are completely reliant on the generosity of our donors and supporters, with 89 per cent of the £14M we need each year to deliver our life saving service being raised or donated by the public we serve. We could not operate without you and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

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“But we now urgently need your help. Please donate today to help KSS care and save lives.

“I thank you on behalf of each and every patient we treat and care for. Together we can save the lives of those who need us now more than ever.”

Donations can be made online at www.aakss.org.uk/appeal.