IN THE COMMUNITY: Easthampstead Rotary Club helps Thames Valley Air Ambulance

Thames Valley Air Ambulance
Thames Valley Air Ambulance is being helped by Easthampstead Rotary Club

With so many people staying at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, our roads have been much quieter than normal in recent weeks. One might think that calls on our Air Ambulance would reduce. Not so.

Thames Valley Air Ambulance team member, Nicola Bishop, reported. “Despite the Coronavirus pandemic, Thames Valley Air Ambulance is continuing to provide our pre-hospital critical care service across the Thames Valley.

“In April and May, we also supported our NHS colleagues with our paramedics and doctors working a total of 616 hours in the John Radcliffe Hospital, the main regional Covid-19 treatment centre, and our crew spent 276 hours on shift available to provide a patient transfer service between hospitals to help stop them being overwhelmed.”

TVAA supporter, Easthampstead Rotarian Peter von Bergen has also being doing his bit. The grandpa in his 70s is continuing with his Community Challenge in support of their work. He has been cycling on an exercise bike, walking with Pickle his Bichon Frise rescue dog and rowing – Pilates-ing.

He has already exceeded his original goal of 200 miles, and beaten his £500 fundraising target.

To date 372 miles completed and still going strong.

“And people have been so generous,” he said. “Donations from near and far – including Australia.”

Thames Valley Air Ambulance
Peter von Bergen has been fundraising for Thames Valley Air Ambulance

Nicola of TVAA has emailed Peter: “Thank you for continuing with your fundraising and clocking up those miles.

“Our frontline staff have undergone retraining, so that they can work seamlessly alongside our NHS partners in the Emergency Department, transporting patients in and out of Covid-19 Intensive Care Units and transporting critically ill coronavirus patients around our region.

“The crew completed two intensive training days at RAF Benson in full PPE.

“The professionalism of our crew and their dedication and resilience is second to none. Now, as the restrictions are being slowly lifted we are seeing our number of call outs pretty much back to what we would expect for this time of year – so the support and fundraising from our community continues to make a big difference.”

Since the UK lockdown measures were introduced in mid-March, Easthampstead Rotarians have been holding online Zoom meetings with outside speakers including one member who lives in the US.

Thames Valley Air Ambulance
Thames Valley Air Ambulance has continued to work throughout the coronavirus pandemic

Club donations have included more than £2,000 to both the Bracknell and Wokingham Foodbanks, and money and clothes to The Cowshed, a new Berkshire charity which provides good quality cleaned and ironed clothes and other essentials free to anyone in need.

For more details go to www.thecowshed.org

For more on Easthampstead Rotarians, visit http://www.easthampsteadrotary.orgor www.facebook.com/easthampsteadrotaryclub

To make a donation, log on to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/pa-bergen

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