What Volunteering could do for you

Clare ‘working her magic’ in the Magpas Air Ambulance fundraising office

After being out of the workplace for a while supporting members of my family through health problems, I felt like I had rather lost my identity. I thought of volunteering as a way to rebuild my confidence and felt an office based role would suit me best; as I had previously worked in a school office and for a wildlife charity.


I researched into local charities but nothing felt quite right. Then I found the Magpas website. I knew they were an air ambulance charity but I didn’t realise that they attend life-threatening emergencies over several counties, not just Cambridgeshire and that they also use rapid response cars. They obviously help a lot of people when they most need help and that really appealed to me. They were advertising for volunteers so I decided to take the plunge!


I was extremely nervous having an interview after so many years, but I needn’t have worried as it was very informal. We decided that my skills would be more useful to the fundraising team. So I am currently researching trusts that might be suitable for us to approach for funding. It’s work I enjoy as I like to get stuck into a project and see it through from beginning to end and I am realising how vital fundraising is for the charity.


Everyone at Magpas Air Ambulance has gone out of their way to make me feel welcome and they are a great, fun bunch to work with. At the moment I work one morning a week which fits in well with home life, as I am also a landlord and that takes up a lot of my time, keeping the admin up to date.


So, if like me, you’ve been looking for something new to try and have a few hours to spare; how about considering volunteering for Magpas Air Ambulance? I am glad I did. As I tell people when they ask about the charity, there may come a time when I, or a member of my family urgently need the medical expertise of their hospital level doctor and paramedic team. Just give Debbie the Supporter Care Manager at Magpas Air Ambulance a call on: 01480 371060 (Option 2), or you can email her: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Why I volunteer at Magpas Air Ambulance

Irene in the Magpas Air Ambulance fundraising office with Debbie our Supporter Care Manager
Debbie talking Irene through her volunteering office mission of the day!


I retired in December 2018 and decided I’d like to volunteer, but the question was where? I had walked past Magpas Air Ambulance a few times and thought to myself, “I would love to be involved in something worthwhile and this is such a good cause.”


When I received the application form, it had tick boxes for what I was interested in and I decided to tick the ‘office fundraising’ box, as office work played a big part of my working life. I then had an interview with Annette from the team and I couldn’t wait to start!


When I joined, I realised the charity is run purely on donations and that made me want to help even more. My days are varied and I enjoy every minute. The fundraising team work exceptionally hard to raise the funds needed to help make a huge difference to seriously ill or injured people’s lives. I am really pleased to be part of the Magpas Air Ambulance family.


If, like Irene, you’d like to be part of our team and volunteer by giving a few hours of your time at Magpas Air Ambulance;  just give Debbie our Supporter Care Manager at Magpas Air Ambulance a call on: 01480 371060 (Option 2).



We look forward to hearing from you. Thank you.



Hearts Matter: Community CPR

Our Magpas Air Ambulance medical team is activated to a growing number of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests where the current survival rate in the UK is as low as 7-8%.

We believe that training people in basic CPR and using a defibrillator could make all the difference and give people the confidence and skills to act in an emergency.

Hearts Matter and together with the communities in which we work, we can make a difference! 

The Facts

  • There are approximately 30,000 out of hospital cardiac arrests attended to by medical professionals every year, of which only 40% of victims receive bystander CPR%.
  • For each minute that goes by without defibrilation, the chances of surviving an out of hospital cardiac arrest decreases by 10%.  
  • The current survival rate of cardiac arrests in the UK is 7-8%.  In comparison areas with a comprehensive strategy to reduce deaths by cardiac arrest have survival rates of 50%.

The Need

  • Recognising a cardiac arrest, calling 999, administering CPR, and defibrillation are crucial elements of the chain of survival.
  • Bystander CPR has shown to double a person's chances of survival, while defibrillation within 3-5 minutes can increase survival rates to 50 - 70%.

What we're doing about it

  • At Magpas Air Ambulance, we want everyone to have the confidence and knowledge to intervene when someone is suffering a cardiac arrest, to provide them with CPR and to deploy a defibrillator in the vital minutes before the emergency services arrive. 
  • To make this a reality, we have just launched our own community training session, Hearts Matter - Community CPR, which is available to schools, businesses, and community groups across Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire - FOR FREE 

Enquire about your FREE training session today

How to enquire:

  1. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
  2. Please include the information below in your email:
  • Your Name
  • Name of Organisation/School
  • Address
  • Where you plan your session to take place
  • Expected number of attendees
  • How did you hear about Hearts Matter: Community CPR?
  • Contact email
  • Contact phone
  1. Our Community and Training Officer or a member of the team will be in touch within 7 working days.  





This project was part-funded by the A14 community fund

PHOTO CAPTION (as above / from left to right):

Magpas Air Ambulance, Paramedic Alex Pearce and Doctor Adriana Cordier, at the new Royal Papworth Hospital, with some of their cath lab team and (far right), Magpas Air Ambulance Medical Director Dr Simon Lewis


Magpas Air Ambulance and Royal Papworth Hospital came together on Saturday 13 April to trial the emergency heart attack pathway at our new hospital.


As part of the charity’s Pre-Hospital Emergency Medical (PHEM) operational training; we set up a simulated patient transfer into the new hospital and landed at the Cambridge Biomedical Campus - with an intubated and ventilated ‘simulated’ patient on board, accompanied by a concerned “relative”.


The “patient” was then transferred into one of Royal Papworth’s new cath labs via ambulance and taken straight to the cath labs via our dedicated route for emergency admissions.


The “patient” had been suffering with chest pain and required treatment under Papworths Primary Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PPCI) pathway, a procedure used to treat patients with blocked arteries of the heart causing a heart attack or myocardial infarction.


Reflecting on the day, Dr Will Davies, Consultant Interventional Cardiologist at Royal Papworth, said: “Saturday not only saw the new hospital open for a friends and family Open Day, but a highly-successful scenario training day for the cardiology staff working in the cath labs.


“The joint exercise with Magpas Air Ambulance and their enhanced medical team; enabled us to test every permutation and combination of events to make sure we’re ready for our first emergency patients on Wednesday 1 May.


“Our patients can be rest assured we’re fully ready to go live and the state-of-the-art facilities at the new Royal Papworth Hospital will ensure we maintain the best clinical outcomes possible for all patients following a heart attack.”


Magpas Air Ambulance Medical Director Simon Lewis explained, “This training exercise; with our Magpas enhanced doctor and paramedic team, ‘Harry’ (our new simulated manikin patient) and the Royal Papworth Hospital team, was a great success. The hospital facilities are fantastic and made the transfer, from the helipad through to the PPCI cath labs, very easy”.


Dr Lewis went on to say, “This revolutionises the care given to patients. It was a privilege for my medical team and I to join the hospital at their new site.”



Royal Papworth Hospital began its three-week move period to its new hospital on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus on Tuesday 23rd April. The first patients are due to be admitted from today (1st May). 



New Helicopter Launch

Magpas Air Ambulance are proud to announce the arrival of our brand new helicopter, which is set to become the new Magpas Air Ambulance on Wednesday 1st May of this year.

The current helicopter has served us well, but it has come to the end of its working life as an air ambulance. The new helicopter will enable us to fly further, faster, to a greater number of patients, providing lifesaving care to patients in life threatening emergencies in; Cambridgeshire, Peterborough, Bedfordshire, the East of England and beyond.

Magpas Air Ambulance can only exist because of the communities within which we work. Without our supporters, we wouldn’t be able to bring this state-of-the-art helicopter to the region. Yesterday (Wednesday 24th April), we organised a big community fly in and flew to four locations to say thank you. We flew from our operations base in Huntingdon to near Downham Market in Norfolk, moving onto Parker’s Piece in Cambridge, then onto Newmarket Academy and finally to Priory Country Park in Bedfordshire. We wanted to say thank you for the support over the last 48 years and to celebrate this milestone in the future of lifesaving care:


However, the story doesn’t stop here! We need an extra £50,000 a month to keep the new air ambulance for your community flying.

To read more about how you can go #FurtherFasterGreater to support Magpas Air Ambulance, please click here https://magpas.org.uk/furtherfastergreater . Thank you.


Magpas Air Ambulance is a Registered Charity Number 1119279. Registered as a Company limited by guarantee in England & Wales No. 6062176. Registered office at Centenary House, St Mary’s Street, Huntingdon, PE29 3PE.
Registered Charity No. 1119279

Postcode Community Trust is a grant-giving charity, funded entirely by players of People's Postcode Lottery. Our Hearts Matter project received £20,000 from the Trust.

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