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Over £110,000 raised at the Friends of the Flying Doctor Dinner 2016

His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales last night praised the ‘indefatigable’ Royal Flying Doctor Service men and women who are providing an increasingly diverse range of services in Australia’s outback. Prince Charles highlighted the need for effective mental health services for people facing the challenges of living in isolated areas and supporting their families on properties, particularly after prolonged droughts, floods and bushfires.

‘Across the vast Australian continent there can be few sights and sounds more comforting than the Flying Doctor’s plane coming over the horizon to signal that vital help is on its way’, Prince Charles said via a video message  to the 270 guests at the Friends of the Flying Doctor Dinner held at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower, Knightsbridge on 20 October 2016.

“In November 2012, in Longreach, my wife and I were so pleased to be able to dedicate a Service aircraft in honour of the efforts of the Royal Flying Doctor Service – Friends in the UK.  At that time, I was reminded of the many and varied challenges faced by the Service in delivering support where there are often no hospitals, doctors or medical services,” The Prince said.

The Chairman of the Royal Flying Doctor Service – Friends in the UK, Mr Peter Box announced the Friends of the Flying Doctor Dinner 2016 had raised over £110,000.  He thanked the sponsors, donors, contributors and guests for their wonderful generosity.

Adam Hills, comedian and host of The Last Leg television program, mesmerised the room with his unique, warm brand of humour.  When one of the guests offered to donate £100 to the RFDS in return for having a ‘selfie’ with Adam, not only did Adam agree he then invited other guests to do the same. It seems selling ‘selfies’ with Adam Hills has overtaken the noble lamington drives of yesteryear as a means of fundraising for the RFDS.

The 270 guests enjoyed premium Moss Wood wine from Western Australia while supporting the Flying Doctor by bidding on a range of valuable and unique auction prizes, including a rare magnum of Moss Wood Cabernet Sauvignon from the 2013 vintage signed by Keith and Clare Mugford, owners of Moss Wood.

Australia’s Leading Lady, Rhonda Burchmore rewarded the Dinner guests’ generosity with a sizzling cabaret performance. Rhonda flew to London courtesy of Virgin Australia especially to support this fundraising Dinner for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service provides vital 24 hour emergency cover and clinical and preventative health services across 90% of Australia’s land mass to approximately 800 rural and remote patients per day, every day of the year. Operating continuously since 1928, RFDS doctors and nurses now work from 23 bases across Australia utilising a fleet of 66 fully instrumented aircraft with the very latest technology. Today, RFDS pilots annually fly the equivalent distance of 34 trips to the moon and back.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service is a not-for-profit organisation that relies heavily on fundraising and donations from the community to fund much-needed medical and aeronautical equipment and provide innovative services such as mental health family workshops in isolated areas in the Australian outback.

Donations to the Royal Flying Doctor Service can be made via the Royal Flying Doctor Service – Friends in the UK here.

See pics from the Friends of the Flying Doctor Dinner 2016 here.

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