Rescue fundraiser goes virtual

Base to Base is a novel way to help raise funds for Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service and at the same time get a close-up glimpse of day-to-day operations.

With COVID restrictions in place, Base to Base will be held online in October when participants will go on a virtual journey of the service’s operations.

Participants can walk, run, ride or roll the distance between the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Services bases in Belmont, Broadmeadow, Tamworth and Lismore.

They can engage individually or in a team, and they can participate in a variety of skill levels ranging from 42km through to a challenging 1,386km full loop between all four bases.

“The service is there for the community 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and this event gives the community a chance to move where we fly, all the while learning about how they operate and supporting the team in the sky and on the ground,” said Richard Jones, CEO of Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service.

“Whether you are walking 1km a day over the month or cycling big kilometres every weekend, there’s a difference for everyone to get involved and get active for your rescue helicopter.”

Base to Base will take people on a virtual journey of the service’s operations across northern bases, from where they fly to come to the Central Coast for rescues, and as participants travel the distance of the flights, they will hear from past patients, learn about volunteers and experience a virtual base tour.

The event was created as a result of the impact of COVID-19 on the service’s face-to-face community fundraising activities including Op Shops, volunteering, events and workplace talks, leaving a significant shortfall in vital community fundraising.

“Not only have a lot of our planned events been postponed, but the Service was very aware of the mental health toll on members of the community that the additional lockdowns and restriction arising from the Delta variant is taking.

“October is Mental Health Month, so the idea was for people to be able to get active and work together towards a goal without compromising public health and safety.

“Whether you can join in or simply support a participant for a little bit or a lot, every dollar raised helps us stay ready to respond to our communities, and we are so grateful for your continued support,” Jones said.

Participants can register at

Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service