Hope Air in North Central BC
Hope Air is a national charity that arranges free flights for low income individuals to travel to their medical appointments far from home. Since its establishment in 1986, Hope Air has arranged more than 96,000 flights and impacted countless individuals by helping alleviate the stress of getting to medical treatment for Canadian families and their communities.
Hope Air has a pronounced presence in Northern British Columbia communities, arranging flights that impact thousands of people across the region. Prince George, Fort St. John, Terrace, Smithers and Masset are among the busiest departure cities for BC Hope Air Clients. In 2014 alone, Hope Air arranged 5,098 flights for British Columbia residents. Almost half of these flights were for children and their escorts, giving parents peace of mind in knowing their children were able to receive necessary medical attention without added financial strain. Hope Air’s service allows children to get back to their routines sooner and parents to return to work, keeping families together and preventing absenteeism.
Hope Air believes that all Canadians should have equal access to healthcare, regardless of geography or household income. For many families, the cost of purchasing a flight can be prohibitive. Many of Hope Air’s BC Clients live near the poverty line, meaning that securing the funds required to purchase airfare is not always feasible. Clients in BC report that without Hope Air’s assistance, 29% would have cancelled their important medical appointments due to lack of transportation, 23% of Clients would have travelled 8+ hours by ground transportation and 7% would have borrowed money from relatives to pay the cost of a flight to get to their appointment.
Hope Air will have a record-breaking year in 2015; they are on track to arrange more than 9,000 flights across Canada. Hope Air’s work is made possible through the generous support of their donors, allowing them to purchase seats on commercial airlines, in addition to seats donated to Hope Air by their airline partners. Hope Air is also supported by Volunteer Pilots who fly Clients on their private aircraft, and by corporate aircraft owners who offer Hope Air public benefit flights.
Baby Bryony of Prince George (pictured at left) needed long term treatment for an injury. Hope Air arranged flights for Bryony and her family to fly to Vancouver for her appointments. Follow the link to read her story: http://hopeair.ca/news/ViewMedia.aspx?ProfilePDF=119.
If you would like to support Hope Air’s vital work in your community and help families like Bryony’s, consider making a donation. You can direct your donation specifically towards flights for BC families at: http://www.hopeair.ca/shh/SupportHopeAir.aspx.