Please Take Me There to raise funds to buy an airplane for transporting sick children

Cessna airplane will be based at Cambridge Airport to fly children with cancer in the UK and Internationally.

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23rd November 2017- Local Cambridge charity – Please Take Me There – today announced a new programme ‘Fly Through Cancer’ – with a fundraising goal of purchasing a Cessna airplane to be used in the UK and internationally. The airplane will help sick children get where they need to go, as quickly and easily as possible. For nine months of the year the plane will operate in the UK, flown by volunteer pilots in Cambridge. The airplane will be specially equipped and help families to take their children to consultations, treatments, and on important family or recreational trips.  Donors to this programme will have the unique opportunity to be able to see regularly how their money is helping families, and also have the chance to have their name painted on the airplane.

Charity founder, Fernando Pinho commented, ‘Transport is a hidden challenge facing sick children and their families all over the world. We all take our journeys for granted, but getting from A to B takes on a whole new significance when that journey could save a life, or bring a moment of happiness to a sick child.’ He continued. ‘Since we started in 2015, we have facilitated more than 2,000 life-changing journeys in Burma and in Ghana. Our new programme ‘Fly Through Cancer’ will also enable us to address the great need in the UK for free, fast, easy and safe travel for children with cancer.’

He continued, ‘Thousands of causes around the world need support. We chose to look at transport because it is an issue that has a huge impact on people’s lives, and can also be relatively easily solved, with the right resources. In the UK, we will work with cancer charities, hospitals and hospices, to help children for whom the right transport could make impossible journeys, easy and even enjoyable.’

Fly Through Cancer

The ‘Fly Through Cancer’ programme launches this month on #GivingTuesday (Nov 28th), when every donation made will be matched by Facebook (if donors use the Facebook donation button). Donations will contribute towards ‘Please Take Me There’s’ current on the ground work in Burma and Ghana, in partnership with World Child Cancer, and towards the UK programme. Currently in the UK, it is estimated that families of children with cancer spend on average an extra £600 per month*1, the majority of which is on travel. The goal of ‘Fly Through Cancer’ is to finance flights to and from airports and small airfields around the British Isles, so families will be able to get where they need to go in safety, and privacy.  This is so important for sick children, with compromised immune systems, who risk infection travelling on public transport or feel very unwell on long, car journeys. 

The airplane will be based at Cambridge airport, which is the ideal location for the plane, as an extremely well-equipped and professionally run airfield, centrally located in the UK. Support from Cambridge Aero Club and the airport is a key factor in the launch of this programme. 

Terry Holloway, Managing Director of the Cambridge Aero Club commented, ‘This is a very worthwhile and exciting project, and the Cambridge Aero Club is delighted to have an association with ‘Please Take Me There’. We look forward to helping with the selection and management of the Pilots and will be honoured to manage this special aeroplane from the Marshall’s Cambridge International Airport.’

How Will It Work?

Flights in the UK will be from smaller airports, closer to where the families live. Offering free access to the airplane for non-emergency transport, families can use the plane to travel to medical examinations, treatments or to see a specialist. The Cessna airplane will also be available for recreational flights allowing children and families to create valuable memories together. For short and medium haul distances, these special flights will allow children and their families to fly safely at no cost, reducing the time they need to be away from home, and from school or work. Weather permitting, they can fly when it is convenient for them. They won’t need to deal with the stress of travelling through busy airports, queuing for check in and security procedures.

During winter months, and once a year, the airplane will travel to developing countries and help transport children from remote areas to the hospitals that can treat them. Please Take Me There will also fly medical teams to remote areas to help diagnose patients and provide essential training to local doctors and nurses.

Name on a Plane and Chance to Help Families in Need

As well as being able to see for themselves the real difference made with their donations, through regular updates and videos, donors will also have the chance to have their name painted on this life changing airplane, once the airplane is funded and purchased (for the minimum donation of £4/ a month or a one-off payment of £48.00,). Donors will also be able to take part in events, can visit the airplane at special open days, or visit and work with the charity at their offices in Cambridge if they wish to.  

 

1 Figures from Clic Sargent report, Sept 2016