Phoenix Group, Europe’s largest life and pensions consolidator, is donating £50,000 to charity partner Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance as part of a UK-wide package of community support in response to COVID 19. Phoenix’s one-year partnership with Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance, which began in February 2019, was due to end this Spring. Given the importance of the role that the service is providing in the face of COVID 19, Phoenix is now extending this to the end of 2020.
Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance has been dedicated to remaining on the front-line throughout the current pandemic, providing critical care to the most seriously ill and injured patients in the region. In addition, Specialist Critical Care Paramedics from the Charity’s Critical Care Team have volunteered to work extra shifts in the Emergency Department at University Hospital Southampton. This month, the Charity also announced that it was to be one of the first Air Ambulance services to collaborate with the Royal Air Force to carry critically ill patients from more remote areas to major trauma centres, including The Nightingale Hospital at the ExCel Centre, London. Phoenix’s donation will assist with operational funding of the Charity’s life-saving service, which has so far responded to nearly 500 call-outs this year. Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance receives no government funding and is solely reliant upon the generosity of individuals and organisations to help save lives.
Alex Lochrane, CEO, Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance adds:
“Like so many charities struggling to keep their services going, we have had to stop all fundraising and community outreach activities and, as a result, we are expecting to see a significant drop in income. This generous donation from Phoenix Group will help us to carry on doing what we do best: saving lives. A heartfelt thank you to everyone at Phoenix Group for the tremendous support and dedication they have shown throughout our fantastic partnership.”
Andy Briggs, CEO, Phoenix Group comments:
“It is vital we recognise the life-saving efforts of Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance and the unprecedented demands for their service at this time. They need more funds to survive and help others. As our charity partner, it is our duty to donate and this small measure is part of our wider commitment to support communities across the UK battling the effects of COVID 19. At this time of economic and social uncertainty all charities are vulnerable and we urge financially able businesses to join us in providing Air Ambulance charities with a vital lifeline.”
Earlier this month the Phoenix Group, which has offices in Basingstoke, announced it would be donating a total of £1 million to support the important work of charities, giving £500,000 of this to charitable organisations working in the communities where the Phoenix Group has regional premises. This includes three other local Air Ambulance Charities in the UK who are charity partners (Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance, Midlands Air Ambulance Charity and London’s Air Ambulance Charity) and ALONE in Ireland who supports older people. In addition, in recognition of the pandemics wide impact, charities also receiving funds will cover a variety of services, from providing mental health care to homeless shelters and food banks.
Phoenix has also donated £500,000 to Age UK’s Emergency Coronavirus Appeal, which will help older people who desperately need support during this unprecedented health emergency.