Midlands Air Ambulance Charity recently recognised a number of local heroes at its Recognition Awards and Charity Ball held at Edgbaston Stadium in Birmingham.
The event, which celebrates the service’s lifesaving aircrew, dedicated fundraisers, supporters, corporate partners, and volunteers, was hosted by TV’s Alison Hammond and Heart West Midlands’ Ed James and was sponsored by Halesowen-based IT company, EBC Group. As well as recognising individuals and organisations that have made a significant difference to the charity over the past 12 months, the evening also raised an astonishing £74,000 for Midlands Air Ambulance Charity’s rapid response emergency service. This amount will help make 49 lifesaving missions possible – 23 via air ambulance and 26 in the organisation’s fleet of critical care cars.
Here is a round-up of the deserving winners from the West Midlands:
Crew Award – Awarded to a member of the clinical or operational team who has been recognised by their colleagues for going above and beyond the call of duty to support patient care.
Sponsored by: Babcock Mission Critical Services
Winners: Patient Liaison Leads and Critical Care Paramedics – Kerry Hemus & Rob Davies
Kerry and Rob have embraced their shared role of patient liaison leads with passion, compassion, empathy and a clear vision of supporting patients, their families and loved ones, and using the information they gather to help continuously improve Midlands Air Ambulance Charity’s lifesaving service for future patients. The two worked together to present how the original role for a patient liaison lead could be enhanced by having two of them sharing the role. This means that both are still critical care paramedics and work operational shifts too.
Corporate Partnership Award – Awarded to an organisation and its employees who have demonstrated hard work, initiative and commitment through their CSR policy to raise awareness of and vital donations for the charity.
Sponsored by: Wall James Chappell
Winner: Tipton & Coseley Building Society
Tipton & Coseley started supporting Midlands Air Ambulance Charity in 2018 as they chose the lifesaving service as its Charity of the Year. Since then, it has continued to support Midlands Air Ambulance Charity by donating £50,000 in that time.
Star Award – Awarded to a group, organisation or individual that has gone above and beyond to support the charity.
Sponsored by: Unity4
Winner: Jamie Fear
Jamie Fear from Dudley in the West Midlands sadly lost his best friend, Thomas, in a road traffic collision in November 2021. Thomas’s younger brother, Josh was a passenger and sustained horrific injuries to his brain, neck and back, no one knew if Josh would survive. After weeks in a coma, Josh recovered. Jamie wanted to thank Midlands Air Ambulance Charity for the treatment provided on scene and after finding out more about us he and Josh signed up, with a group of 15 others to do the Wolf Run. So far, he has raised more than £6,000.
Special Incident Award – Awarded to a specific clinical/operational team who demonstrated exceptional skills and teamwork on a particularly challenging mission.
Sponsored by: Gama Aviation
Winner: Chris Brooke, Critical Care Paramedic and Dr Matt Rowley, Pre-hospital Emergency Medicine Doctor
Earlier this year, a seven-year-old boy was visiting a trampoline park in Telford, Shropshire enjoying a day out with his family. Sadly, he was crushed by a crash mat and sustained injuries and suffered a cardiac arrest. Dr Matt Rowley and critical care paramedic Chris Brooke responded to the incident on Midlands Air Ambulance Charity’s Cosford helicopter. After assessing his condition and treating him on scene, the crew administered drugs to sedate the patient and intubated him. He was then airlifted to Royal Stoke University Hospital for further treatment. He was then transferred from Stoke to Birmingham Children’s Hospital. It was from here that he and his family made a public thank you to all those who helped save his life that day.
Inspiration Award – Celebrating an extraordinary individual or group connected to the charity who is a source of inspiration and pride.
Sponsored by: EBC Group
Winner: Nigel and Christine Davis
Nigel suffered an out of hospital cardiac arrest at his home in Tipton in the West Midlands surrounded by his wife and family, a shocking incident to witness. He was resuscitated by one of Midlands Air Ambulance Charity’s critical care paramedics, Richard Apps, working alongside ambulance service paramedics. While his family were told to expect the worst as he was in cardiac arrest for 40 minutes, he survived the ordeal. His fight to survive is inspirational, but his zest for life is of on-going inspiration to everyone at Midlands Air Ambulance Charity.
Nigel and his wife, Christine, felt they had been given a second chance of life together and bought a caravan where they tend to spend their days. They were also approached by the charity to help raise awareness of the importance of bystander CPR, which undoubtedly helped to save his life before the crew arrived on scene. To assist with this, they supported a media campaign and took part in a case study film, stepping outside their comfort zone to help the charity they are passionate to support. Nigel and Christine have without doubt become an inspiration to the team at the lifesaving service.
Emma Gray, chief operating officer for Midlands Air Ambulance Charity, said: “As a pre-hospital emergency service founded within our local communities, we are extremely proud of all our deserving winners from this year’s Awards and Charity Ball who have helped to raise awareness of our charitable status and funds to ensure we can operate into the future.
“We appreciate the support we receive from all our fundraisers, volunteers, donors and corporate partners across the counties we serve and would like to congratulate all our winners on the night.”