Maitland's Westpac Rescue Helicopter support group needs volunteers, secretary, events coordinator

A lack of volunteers and board members has left Maitland’s Westpac Rescue Helicopter support group in trouble.

The group has made an urgent call for help, saying its efforts to raise money for the service has been hampered and it won’t be able to attend all of its usual fundraising events.

Eight people attended the annual general meeting earlier this month and the position of secretary and events coordinator is yet to be filled.

That has put immense pressure on the group’s ability to function. 

The group previously had around 20 volunteers who helped raise money at events throughout the year. They usually spared a few hours each month. 

Peter Brereton, a former chairman, was saddened to hear the news. 

“Volunteers receive a feeling of satisfaction when they realise just how much their contribution is valued by the helicopter service and the community in general,” he said.

“They are helping to save lives and shortening the injured's suffering.”

UPSET: Westpac Rescue Helicopter Maitland Support Group former chairman Peter Brereton.

UPSET: Westpac Rescue Helicopter Maitland Support Group former chairman Peter Brereton.

Mr Brereton urged the city to consider joining the group. 

“The support groups have to raise a lot of money each year to keep the helicopters in the sky, and they can’t do that without volunteers,” he said.

“The secretary position is vital – that involves getting correspondence through the mail and from the helicopter base and raising it with the group.

“It also involves taking minutes at the monthly meeting.”

The group meets on the first Wednesday of each month at Maitland City Bowling Club from 7pm. 

Anyone interested in volunteering should phone chairman Margaret Kirkwood on 0418 622 385.