WMSAR has been awarded £32,000 by the Department for Transport to allow us to purchase 3 new boats, engines, water safety kits and a replacement 4×4 towing vehicle.
This is a great recognition of the team’s continual efforts to provide a top-class professional rescue service, as the grant was one of the largest awarded to 51 national teams.
On reflection though, the grant comes with a burden too. Our insurance will go up, and we need more space to store the kit securely.
We’re currently engaged in a project to find a new home. We are searching for a single hub in the area between Shrewsbury, Bridgnorth and Telford – a location which we have analysed as being the best for our deployments and our member base.
We’re pushing very, very hard on our fundraising – in particular corporate fundraising – but we’re finding that most companies want to sponsor a ‘thing’ or a project. Understandable from their point of view, of course, but it leaves us with a large gap in finances for the overheads like rent, insurance, fuel and maintenance, which are the major monthly outgoings for the charity (around £14000 a year).
For the first time in the team’s history we’re having to ask members to pay a monthly contribution towards those overheads until we can find more sustainable income streams.