News -

Locals transform LifeFlight hangar into spring spectacle

Inspired by the airlift of her brother, Toowoomba local, Kate Ruijter held a picturesque picnic inside the Toowoomba RACQ LifeFlight Rescue hangar. 

Usually home to two helicopters, today things were a little different. The hangar was filled with picnic tables, doughnuts, fairy lights, balloons and bouquets of flowers. 

Kate said the temporary transformation, into a picnic for sixty people, was all in aid of raising much needed funds for the lifesaving service. 

"I own a beauty salon in Toowoomba and find most of my clients know someone who has been airlifted by RACQ LifeFlight Rescue," Kate said. 

Kate Ruijter's youngest brother was airlifted by the Toowoomba RACQ LifeFlight Rescue helicopter in 2010, after a firework exploded underneath him. 

His injuries saw him rushed to the Queensland Children's Hospital, by the local aeromedical team. 

"You never know when yourself or a loved one will need the service," Kate said. 

Last financial year, the Toowoomba RACQ LifeFlight Rescue helicopter performed 643 missions, making it the service's busiest base. 

"It's a world-class service which is provided at no cost to patients. It's expensive to keep airborne so we rely heavily on community support, " RACQ LifeFlight Rescue Fundraising Coordinator Amy Luhrs said. 

On average each mission costs $12,500 and up to 30% of the operational costs of lifesaving missions is raised through sponsors, donors and events.