Fly2help uses the power of flight to help people change their lives
fly2help was founded in 2006 by pilot Phill O’Dell and built up by a group of passionate aviators who wanted to share the excitement that surrounds flying with people who have not, or think they could not, experience it for themselves.
In the first ten years, we have flown 1,713 people of all ages on our Air Smiles Days, over 300 of them in the last year. From our home base at Cotswold Airport, we now fly regularly from sixteen different airports across the UK in many different planes, from Cessna 210s and Piper Cherokees to Eclipse and Gulfstream jets, as well as the occasional helicopter.
122 young people have taken part in our Aim High scholarship weeks and many are now in the early stages of their careers in the aviation industry. Matt Crouch, an Aim High 2010 scholar, is now First Officer for Monarch Airlines, Harriet Siebenaller discovered an aptitude for Operations and is planning to join the RAF and Scott Pike got his first job with Air Salvage International.
fly2help has a small staff team of seven and the active help of many, many volunteers and an enthusiastic bear called Douglas. There are ten Trustees, whose skills and experience cover aviation, business development, the creative industries, marketing and charity management.
– HOW WE HELP –
Doesn’t everything feel better from above the clouds? With a tail wind behind you and blue skies stretching ahead you can look at life from a different perspective. And even if you do know how planes stay up in the air it is still a magical feeling to defy gravity.
Aerospace is one of the fastest growing and most exciting industries in the UK, employing nearly 1 million people and producing £52 billion of business. With air traffic predicted to increase by 5% over the next twenty years up to 35,000 more aircraft are needed, 500,000 more commercial pilots and many more engineers, technicians and ground crew to get them safely up in the air.
Fly2help uses the inspirational experience of flight to:
- Improve the emotional wellbeing of children and adults coping with physical disabilities, distress, anxiety or isolation by arranging experience days centred around flights in small aircraft
- encourage young people to consider future careers in the aviation industry by running week-long scholarship programmes and an alumni network
- raise the self-esteem and confidence of disadvantaged young people by running taster days and mentoring programmes
- enable individuals and organisations with an interest in aviation to participate in and support our work so that more people can benefit
We do this by working with pilots, aircraft owners, airfields and aviation companies, as well as many volunteers and supporters, to run Air Smiles flight experience days and Aim High education programmes.
– HOW TO HELP –
Every pound, hour or flight donated to fly2help goes towards changing people lives, through the excitement of flight.
You can make a donation at any time, either a single gift or by setting up a regular monthly donation. All donations, large and small, mean we can get on with our charitable programme, safe in the knowledge that it is funded.
You might like to join in one of the fundraising events we organise, or create your own event, whether that is an ambitious 300-mile cycle challenge, running a local 10k or choosing fly2help as your charity for a pub quiz, aviation-themed talk or golf tournament. If we can help, we’d love to.
– HOW IT HELPS –
“fly2help is an awesome charity for anyone in aviation to support. I’ve seen for myself the amazing boost their Air Smiles Days give to people living in heart-breaking situations. The expression on their faces is what I try to keep in mind when my legs are burning on the hills on my bike – raising money for them.”
Richie Mason – Starflight Aviation
||Gives two children a goody bag each to take home, filled with a cuddly Douglas Bear and baseball hat
||Would pay for a family’s photobook of their Air Smiles Day
||Makes sure there is a special cake enough for 80 at a Grand Air Smiles Day Out
||Keeps our volunteers safe airside in high-visibility vests
||Would provide flying lessons for five Aim High scholars
||Would sponsor an Air Smiles Day, which you would be very welcome to join as a volunteer
||Helps sponsor a new STEM education programme for children with special educational needs