Press Releases

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance launch volunteer recruitment drive on the Isle of Wight

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance are seeking volunteers on the Isle of Wight to help the charity continue to promote its life saving service throughout the local community and beyond.   The charity prides itself on the close links that it has with the communities that it serves and has a loyal team of 16 volunteers on the Isle of Wight, led by Regional Lead Volunteer Pat Knight.

Volunteers provide invaluable support to Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance throughout the year, fulfilling a number of important and rewarding roles.  From giving talks to local groups to distributing donation pots, attending fundraising events and presenting the charity’s highly successful  ‘Be a 999 Hero’ Education Programme, volunteers play a key role in the day to day fundraising activities of the charity.

‘Our volunteers are the backbone of our charity.  They provide an essential link to our local communities and we simply could not manage without them.’ commented Charity Manager Sherie Williams Ellen.

The charity is keen to recruit a wide range of volunteers from across the Isle of Wight and will be inducting new volunteers throughout the summer.

‘Volunteering not only provides the perfect opportunity to support our life saving service, but it is also a great way to learn new skills and it can be a lot of fun.  We are always looking for volunteers to wear our popular ‘Be A 999 Hero’ character mascots at events and presentations.’ continued Sherie Williams Ellen.

Crewed by pilots, paramedics and doctors trained in pre-hospital care, the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance is in effect, bringing  the emergency department to patients across the Isle of Wight, transferring then to specialist hospitals on the mainland when necessary.  It takes approximately 20 minutes for the Air Ambulance to reach the Isle of Wight from its airbase in Thruxton, Andover.

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance flies seven days a week, up to 19 hours a day, and attends an average of two to three missions a day, many of them life saving.  The charity receives no government, statutory or national lottery funding for routine operations, and is entirely dependent on gifts received from members of the public, companies and grant-making bodies to keep the Air Ambulance flying and saving lives.   To keep the Air Ambulance flying HIOWAA needs to raise approximately £230,000 per month




Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance                                 Tel:  02380 333377
Caroline Tyree (Communications and PR Lead)
Melissa Hare (Press Officer)

Notes to Editors

Large file versions of all images are available
Sherie Williams Ellen is available for interview

HIOWAA is the charity that delivers an advanced trauma team to critically injured people across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

Using an H135, the latest generation of EC135 helicopter, our doctor and paramedic team can be at a patient’s side within minutes, providing life-saving medical interventions, such as blood transfusions and anaesthesia at the roadside.  We fly 7 days a week and attend to an average of 2-3 missions per day, many of them life saving.

Our helicopter can be anywhere within Hampshire in 15 minutes and anywhere within the Isle of Wight within 20 minutes.  It can land in areas the size of a tennis court and on almost any terrain.


In early 2016 HIOWAA commenced night HEMS operations and is now able to undertake emergency missions during the hours of darkness, providing emergency medical support where and when it is needed most.

HIOWAA receives no Government funding, and relies on the generosity of individuals and organisations to help save lives.  As a charity we only receive help through the secondment of paramedics from our key partner, South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust – SCAS. To keep the Air Ambulance flying we need to raise approximately £230,000 per month.


Our medical achievements


  • We now carry blood on board.
  • We have doctors on board for 97% of our missions.
  • We operate a modern H135 aircraft.
  • In 2016 we began night HEMS operations, enabling us to undertake emergency missions during the hours of darkness, reaching sick and injured people when they need us most.


Our current fundraising aims


  • To maintain the current service.
  • To have a doctor on board for every mission.
  • To deliver extended flying hours, working towards a 24 hour service.

Our statistics


We fly 7 days a week, 365 days a year, both day and night.

  • RTC 33%
  • Cardiac/collapse 25%
  • Sports and falls 18%
  • Horse riding 16%
  • Industrial injury 4%
  • Transfers 3%

To find out more, please visit


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