It was revealed today that the Midlands Air Ambulance charity will receive £5,000 a year for the next 25 years from a local renewable energy farm. Warwickshire Community Energy has agreed to provide the funding through profits from its nearby solar farm. The life-saving charity is set to receive a total of £125,000 across the lifetime of the solar project.
A portion of profits from the sale of renewable energy at the solar farm will be donated to the air ambulance charity – enough to fund 50 life-saving missions over 25 years. In addition, Warwickshire Community Energy will use its expertise in the energy sector to help the charity reduce its energy bills.
Midlands Air Ambulance Charity funds and operates three air ambulances serving Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire and the West Midlands, making it the largest air ambulance operating region in the UK.
Since 1991, the charity has responded to more than 46,000 missions averaging 2,000 per year, making it one of the longest established and busiest air ambulance organisations in the UK. Despite this, it receives no Government or National Lottery funding and relies on fundraisers such as Warwickshire Community Energy to fuel its work.
Sofia Voutianitis, corporate partnerships manager for Midlands Air Ambulance Charity, said: “We’re are thrilled to be joining forces with Warwickshire Community Energy through this new partnership. The generous annual donations will make a big difference and help us to continue to save lives across the region.”
Adrian Pike, chairman of Warwickshire Community Energy, added: “We’re passionate about supporting the communities we work in and delighted to be able to help Midlands Air Ambulance Charity through our donations and expertise. Lenders to the solar project will undoubtedly find it rewarding that their investments are not only funding green energy but supporting very worthy causes such as this.”
Warwickshire Community Energy’s ‘Poplars’ solar site, near Drayton Manor Farm, covers 11.8 hectares and is expected to generate just over 5,218 MW hours of electricity per year – enough energy to power around 1,373 homes. It features a combined battery storage system, which allows energy to be stored and released to the grid when it’s needed most.
Uniquely, the solar project is funded through a mixture of public and private investment. Members of the public will be able to lend to the project, which offers 5% gross annual returns, with the interest paid every six months for a three-year term.
The public funding element of the project is set to open soon, with the offer launching within the next few weeks. To find out more visit anescocommuityenergy.co.uk