Prolific Ely fundraiser Xander Brown got to take part in a special ceremony yesterday to mark the 45th anniversary of lifesaving charity Magpas.
The eight-year-old Ely St John’s School pupil, who completed a 50 mile bike ride for Magpas earlier this month, was invited to cut a birthday cake with founder Dr Neville Silverston MBE at the charity’s base at RAF Wyton near Huntingdon.
His mother, Michelle Brown, said Xander was “very honoured to be part of such an important Magpas event”, describing Dr Silverston as “a truly amazing man”.
Over the past few years, Xander has raised almost £1500 for Magpas through sponsored bike rides.
During yesterday’s celebrations, Xander helped to do a countdown to release orange balloons, marking the charity’s latest fundraising mission – to raise £45,000 in its 45th year to train, equip and pay a Magpas air ambulance critical care paramedic for 12 months.
Since it was founded in 1971 Magpas Air Ambulance has pioneered improvements in patient care out of hospital for people facing serious medical emergencies. The enhanced training the medical team receives allows them to perform procedures and treatments at the scene, such as general anaesthetic, which would otherwise only be available in hospital.
This means that the frontline care its team delivers doesn’t just save lives – it helps seriously ill and injured people return to a good quality of life.
In 2015 Magpas became the first air ambulance charity in the East of England to offer its services around the clock.
Over 63,000 patients have been provided with lifesaving care by the charity, which receives no government funding, and is totally reliant on public donations.