Uplifting donation to The Devon Air Ambulance Trust

Tuesday, 11 May, 2010

from left to right: CSO Nigel Hare, Caroline Creer (Fundraising Director), Moray Bowater (General Manager, Helpful Holidays), Helen Hayes (PR Manager Helpful Holidays), pilot Steve Rush and paramedic Eddie Bunday.

The Devon Air Ambulance Trust, the charity that raises funds to keep the county's two air ambulances operational, has received £10,000 from Helpful Holidays' charitable fund. The Trust, which needs to raise over £4 million each year to keep its ambulances airborne, will use this generous donation to purchase a trauma simulation manikin, a vital piece of equipment used in the training of its operational crews.

A trauma simulation manikin is an amazing piece of equipment - an electronic life-sized body with reactive pupils, an extended lung and heart sound library, a specialised head and many other functions with which trauma situations can be simulated to deliver realistic and essential life saving training to ambulance crews.

Caroline Creer, Fundraising Director of the Devon Air Ambulance Trust, said, "We are totally reliant upon donations from the community of Devon and businesses like Helpful Holidays to keep Devon's air ambulances airborne and would like to thank them for this very generous donation. It will truly make a great deal of difference to the on going training and development of our crews, so that they continue to be the best that they can be" She added "If you feel your company could do something similar, we would love to hear from you. Please ring us on 01392 466666 or

email info@daat.org

Helen Hayes, PR Manager of Helpful Holidays, added, "The air ambulance crews and support teams have saved countless lives over the years. We've supported them for a number of years now and are delighted to help them purchase this much needed piece of equipment."

Based in Chagford, Helpful Holidays is a family-run business which has grown to become one of the region's leading holiday home specialists with over 650 self-catering homes and cottages throughout Devon, Cornwall, Somerset and Dorset. It's raised over £60,000 to donate to charity this year by not reducing prices when VAT was reduced in 2009.Instead, the company chose to pass that element on to charity.

Moray Bowater, Helpful Holidays General Manager, said, "The VAT change made such a small difference to the cost of an individual holiday, we knew it would make no difference to our sales. But we book over 17,000 holidays annually and we knew those small amounts would add up to quite a bit over the year. It seemed a golden opportunity to raise some cash for charities hit hard by the recession."

The four main benefactors of the money raised are Farms for City Children, The Marine Conservation Society, the RNLI and The Devon Air Ambulance Trust. Many other local and national charities will also receive donations throughout the coming months.

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