COLUMN: Volunteering for air ambulance is so rewarding

New Years Honours: Richard Fletcher
New Years Honours: Richard Fletcher

By Richard Fletcher

Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance Volunteer

One of the biggest questions I have been asked is how did I start volunteering and why volunteer?

In 2011 I was given the opportunity to look at a new career, after being made redundant from an 18-year career with The Co-operative. I had been helping local charities and community activities throughout my career and decided this was the path I wanted to continue on.

Through networking I was given a contact to speak to and having researched Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance, I found their mission statement and key values were very much in line with my own.

For example to work with people and groups that want the same things we do and transforming lives to give experience and confidence in what they do. I have found a great deal of personal satisfaction in being able to support others through co-ordinating people from all walks of life, bringing them together to achieve a common goal. So with job satisfaction as one of my main drivers, the prospect of joining the team at Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance was an exciting opportunity.

I saw Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance as a fresh vibrant charity with huge growth potential in the local community. Also through my search for a job, this is one of the few charities looking to expand in challenging times. Since joining Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance I have had a great time learning and developing my skills, I have been to several events including bucket collections and cheque presentations.

The greatest thing is nearly everyone wants to talk to us, they have their own story and they give generously too. What we provide is an excellent service, we never know when it will be needed or who we will be helping, and that is why it is so important that we do everything we can to help keep this vital service operational.The Derbyshire Team I work with is fantastic group of dedicated individuals and together we can help grow the Air Ambulance Service.

Please join me on the voyage of a lifetime where you could discover the joys of volunteering whether this be through Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance or another charity close to your heart, which ever path you chose, enjoy it, don’t let it become a chore.