IFFR partners with The Air Care Alliance to raise awareness of Service through Aviation – we fly good!

A new partnership for good

“Fellowships” may be Rotary’s greatest hidden secret, and within our Fellowship “Public Benefit Flying” – aviation-related service – may be our greatest hidden secret. But that is rapidly changing now. We are pleased to announce that IFFR has partnered with The Air Care Alliance (ACA), a community of humanitarian flying organizations, to promote general aviation as an opportunity for fellowship and service.

This partnership came about thanks to an initiative started by Alan Dias, a member of our IFFR Membership and Marketing Committee, and an active USA America’s West Angel Flight pilot, and developed by Alan and Mark Hanson, Vice-President of the ACA, who is himself an IFFR member now and a member of the Rotary E-Club of Aviation. 

Together, Alan and Mark have created a presentation available to Rotary Clubs, and other organizations, to publicize the availability of free air transportation for non-emergency medical and other compelling needs. In addition, the presentation highlights the opportunities for Rotarian and non-Rotarian pilots, as well as non-pilots interested in aviation, to get involved with IFFR and other general aviation organizations in their communities.

This partnership with ACA highlights service opportunities for IFFR members and simultaneously helps real people in need access health and hope through aviation. It spreads the word through Rotary Clubs about the benefits of fellowship and service provided to members of the IFFR.” said Alan.

All across the U.S. volunteer pilots provide free flights to patients in need of accessing distant healthcare and for other compelling needs, an activity commonly known as “public benefit flying”. However, free flights to medical care is a little known resource. For the non-profit organizations that compose the Air Care Alliance and arrange the flights, raising awareness of their services is a constant and costly challenge requiring duplicative efforts and significant resources.

The presentation, created by ACA and the IFFR, promotes public benefit flying on a national level through broad-reach organizations, such as Rotary. The aim is to leverage the established networks and service mindset of such organizations to help spread awareness to those in need and recruit more pilot volunteers. The outreach efforts kicked off with presentations at Rotary meetings in March in Braintree, MA and in Kirkland, WA, with further talks since then which have already resulted in significant charitable donations to the ACA.

ACA is known as the ‘Voice of Public Benefit Flying’,” said Mark. “This partnership helps to amplify that voice by developing strategic partnerships on a national level. This allows more people to learn about the services ACA members provide and encourages more pilots to use their skills for good.”

Word of the partnership has already reached the aviation press – it was recently picked up and reported by General Aviation News which has 110,000 readers each month.

To further promote the partnership, and to raise awareness of IFFR with other ACA members (many of whom may well wish to find out more about Rotary and IFFR), IFFR Americas has agreed to become a lead sponsor at Air Care 2023, the ACA Annual Conference to be held at the headquarters of AOPA in Frederick Maryland, later this month. Expect photos and a report from that soon.

You can help us to take this forward

Many of our IFFR Americas members participate in public benefit flying and have their own stories to tell. And there is significant interest from Rotary Clubs across the USA in our presentation.  So,

  • if you would be willing to be taken through the presentation and to give a talk using it at a Rotary club near you;
  • if you have your own public benefit flying story to tell; or
  • if you would like to find out more about how you can get involved in public benefit flying,

Please reach out to Alan (if you are west of the Mississippi) or Mark (if you are east of the Mississippi), or put a comment in the box below. 

Congratulations, and thanks, Alan, for all your work to date.  It’s going to be a great way to raise awareness of IFFR and the ACA, and to help us to reach potential members for whom, until now, IFFR has been a hidden secret.

About the Air Care Alliance

Air Care Alliance is a 501(c)(3) non-profit public service organization supporting the work of volunteer-based charitable organizations whose members fly to help others. ACA’s mission is to promote, support, and represent public benefit flying through communication and cooperation among organizations facilitating flights for health, compassion, and community service. ACA represents over 50 volunteer pilot organizations that form a vibrant ecosystem of service through aviation. ACA encourages volunteerism among pilots and ensures that charitable aviation remains a viable resource to those who need it most. To learn more visit aircarealliance.org.

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