RNLI issues mayday call for volunteers

THE Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is issuing its own call for help, appealing for volunteers and fundraisers to get involved with “Mayday”, the charity’s forthcoming national fundraising event, which will take place from May 1 to 4. 

Street collections and fundraising events will be taking place across the north of England. The charity is calling on people to show their support – either by volunteering to help with collections and events, or by taking part in a fundraising activity, in aid of the RNLI. 

This is the first time the charity’s Mayday campaign has been run nationally in the UK, following its success in Ireland and a trial in Liverpool last year. It will launch on Friday, May 1 and run in the UK and Ireland across the four-day May Day bank holiday weekend. 

Most of the events will have a “welly” theme, in a nod to the yellow wellies – an essential piece of kit worn – by the charity’s volunteer lifeboat crew members. Welly walks and welly-themed cake sales are just two examples of the events that will be taking place. 

The charity estimates it will need about 1,100 volunteers to help run the events that will be happening across the UK and Ireland. Last year, RNLI lifeboat crews launched 8,462 times, rescuing 8,727 people and saving 368 lives. They are on-call 24/7, every day of the year, ready to respond emergencies at sea. 

Michael Charlton, RNLI area manager, said: “The RNLI’s dedicated volunteer lifeboat crews are always ready to respond to the Mayday calls of those in distress at sea. 

We’re now hoping people will respond to our call, by volunteering a bit of time to help with some of the collections and events we have planned for the four days over the May Day bank holiday, or by taking part in a fundraising activity. 

“RNLI lifeboat crews are volunteers, who are willing to give up their time and put their own lives at risk to rescue those in danger around our coastline. We hope people will get behind us and show their support.” 

All money raised will support the RNLI’s lifesaving work – it could be used to fund crew training, buy new crew kit, or contribute towards the running costs of a lifeboat station. For more details, go to rnli.org/Mayday, or phone 0300 300 9902.
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