Lift off for “Chopper Jenny”
543. Jenny Ashman
A dedicated, well-loved fundraiser from Stourbridge has raised almost £2 million and given seventeen years of service to Midlands Air Ambulance.
Jenny Ashman or “Jenny from the chopper” as she is known, has been involved with Midlands Air Ambulance Charity since her son became one of the first ever air medics, after being inspired by the number of lives being saved through quick, top class medical treatment.
Wearing her signature red flying suit whenever she fundraises, Jenny has mobilised thousands of people around her and has raised almost £2m. With each medical mission costing on average £2,500, this means that Jenny has directly funded an incredible 800 life saving missions, meaning many people owe their lives to Jenny.
Volunteering four times every week, Jenny has given over 1,000 inspiring talks promoting the work of the service, recently receiving direct thanks from someone who had just seen their grandchild being saved by the Air Ambulance. She has attended hundreds of fundraising events in her 24 years of service, on one occasion collecting £7,000 in a single evening after one of her typically passionate speeches.
Midlands Air Ambulance is the charity responsible for funding and operating three air ambulances serving the communities of six Midlands counties: Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire and the West Midlands. This makes it the largest air ambulance operating region in the UK. Since beginning in 1991 the charity has responded to more than 46,000 missions averaging 2,000 per year, making it one of the longest established and busiest air ambulance organisations in the UK.
Prime Minister David Cameron said:
“Jenny’s incredible fundraising supports life saving work. I’m delighted to name her a Point of Light in recognition of her years of service for the Midlands Air Ambulance Charity.”
“I am truly honoured to have been recognised by a Point of Light award, and can only accept it on behalf of the whole team at Midlands Air Ambulance Charity. It has been a great pleasure to volunteer for such a worthy cause fort the last 24 years, which has inspired me and so many others to help keep the service operational, enabling our splendid air medics to reach and treat those in need of urgent medical attention.”