Public urged to get their running shoes on so they can fly!

Air ambulance run SM Farm
Paul Mc Farland

Air Ambulance Northern Ireland (AANI) is asking the public to don their running shoes and sign up to run the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon in aid of the charity.

As one of the official charity partners for the 2019 event, AANI is encouraging both beginner and veteran runners to train and raise money ahead of race day on Sunday, May 5.

The charity is looking to encourage as many people as possible to take part with the aim of raising sufficient funds close to £40,000 – a figure that will fund the service for one week.

Kerry Anderson, Head of Fundraising, AANI, said: “We are so grateful to the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon for choosing us as an official charity and we can’t wait to see runners in AANI vests on race day.

“AANI is a vital service for Northern Ireland – our helicopter can get to any location in Northern Ireland in approximately 25 minutes and there is always a HEMS doctor and HEMS paramedic on board, so it’s a crucial asset in times of emergency. However, we urgently need the public’s support to help us fund the £2 million needed per year to keep the air ambulance running.

“There’s something for everyone as there are a range of events: put on your trainers for the walk, grab friends for the team relay, take part in the Fun Run with families, or log the hours and train for the full 26.2 miles in support of AANI!

“For those who don’t like to run but still want to be involved, we are also looking for volunteers for our cheer stations to support runners on race day. There is something for everyone and every little bit donated will help us keep this important service running.”

AANI HEMS Paramedic Mike Patton said: “I plan to run in the team relay for the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon on Sunday, May 5, 2019, with members of HEMS Team.

“We need your support to keep us in the air, to keep the service going and to keep delivering the care we are delivering to people across Northern Ireland. Please join me by signing up to take part in the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon 2019 and support your local Air Ambulance.”

The charity, AANI, in partnership with the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS), provides the Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) for the region and responds to seriously ill or injured patients 12 hours a day, seven days per week. AANI has been tasked to more than 672 taskings since its inception in July 2017.

To sign up for the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon in aid of AANI or for more detail about the event, visit belfastcitymarathon.com

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