Air ambulance advice to check charity bags

LIFESAVER Hampshire's air ambulance
LIFESAVER Hampshire's air ambulance

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PEOPLE who donate textiles to an air ambulance charity are being advised to check the name of the organisation they are giving to.

The Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance (HIOWAA) is issuing the advice after some confusion over textile charity bags being posted through doors.

HIOWAA does not post charity bags, but instead has yellow ‘bins’ around the county for people to take their unwanted clothing to.

But another charity called The Air Ambulance Service – which covers three air ambulance charities – has been posting bags.

This is leading some to think they are donating their items to HIOWAA, when they are not.

Chief executive John Perry said: ‘Sadly, we are receiving complaints from residents across the county about these collecting bags. People are enormously generous and when they realise they are inadvertently giving their textiles to another organisation, rather than to HIOWAA, they are very cross and feel misled.

‘We have had many reports of these bags being distributed, and we would like to alert the people to make sure donations intended for your air ambulance are not accidentally given to someone else.

‘I want to advise people HIOWAA does not send leaflets through letter boxes, nor do we deliver plastic collecting bags.’

The Air Ambulance Service covers the Children’s Air Ambulance (CAA) service.

A spokesman said: ‘The CAA is a nationwide service that transfers children across England to specialist treatment centres so they can get the urgent lifesaving treatment they need as soon as possible.

‘As a charity that receives no government or National Lottery funding, we are fundraising across the country in order to raise the £134,000 we need each month to run the service, and our clothing bag collections are a vital source of income.’

HIOWAA partners with Bag It Up for recycling. To find out where your closest bank is, or to arrange a collection from your home, call (02380) 333377.