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Community Finance Ireland makes £340,000 available to water and mountain rescue schemes in Northern Ireland

Community Finance Ireland has provided North West Mountain Rescue Team with £150,000 funding, allowing them to upgrade their fleet of hi-spec rescue vehicles this autumn.  Along with £191,000 for Lough Neagh Rescue, this takes the total amount of funding provided to rescue schemes in Northern Ireland by Community Finance Ireland in 2022, to £340,000.

North West Mountain Rescue Team was established in Derry City in 1980 to provide a search and rescue service for the North West. The operational area has now extended to the geographical boundaries of Northern Ireland with the exception of the Mourne Mountains which is covered by Ireland’s oldest and one of its busiest teams, the Mourne Mountain Rescue Team.  In addition, because they are members of Mountain Rescue Ireland (MRI), they can provide support where needed to any of the ten other Mountain Rescue Teams on the island of Ireland.

Phelim Sharvin, Head of Community Finance Ireland Northern Ireland, said:

“Community Services like the North West Mountain Rescue Team are often at their busiest during the summer months. As we make the most of the longer days by taking to the waters or to the mountains, unfortunately the unexpected can happen.  Now North Mountain Rescue Team is better equipped to respond swiftly and safely to emergency calls.

“The recent social finance provision in Northern Ireland builds on our previous success with rescue schemes in the Republic of Ireland; South Eastern Mountain Rescue in Co. Tipperary and Glen of Imaal Mountain Rescue Team in Co. Wicklow, both of whom we have worked with since 2016.  It brings our total investment in Rescue Schemes on the island of Ireland to £0.83m.”

Treasurer at North West Mountain Rescue, Andrew Kelly, said:

“North West Mountain Rescue Team gained charitable status in 2014.  We provide a year-round, 24 hour call-out service at the request of the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) and to minimise response times, the team is organised into three Sections based in Enniskillen, Magherafelt and Ballymena covering the West, Central and Eastern Sections respectively.  All rescue is carried out by our volunteers, who are expected to respond in all weather conditions, requiring enormous commitment from team members.

“Through this funding the team has been able to purchase a Ford Transit and Toyota Hilux. These vehicles are highly customised to perform their chosen roles, namely: patient extraction and command and control. We are delighted with the support from the team at Community Finance Ireland who recognised the value of our work and supported out application.” 

For information on how social finance could support your organisation, visit https://communityfinanceireland.com/

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