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Invercargill airport firefighters take to the runway for charity

The Southland App

15 March 2024, 2:32 AM

Invercargill airport firefighters take to the runway for charityAirport firefighters Jason Skudder (obscured), Nick Paillandi, Chanelle Wells in helicopter, Sarah King (floral plane) and Lynette Du Plessis (fire engine) try out their fundraising costumes. Photo: Supplied

Invercargill Airport firefighters will take to the city's 2.21km runway this Sunday (Mar 17), in an effort to raise funds and awareness for Ronald McDonald House.


The charity provides family rooms to families with the greatest need, as a place to rest and recharge away from their child’s bedside. Southland Hospital contains four overnight bedrooms and communal facilities for meals and snacks, games and activities for siblings.



The fundraiser is part of Ronald McDonald House Charity’s House to House Challenge where individuals and teams to walk, run, or bike 2.1km, 21km, or 210km over the month of March.


These lengths reflect the average distance of 210km that families travel for their hospitalised children.


Rescue firefighter Sarah King said for Invercargill Airport firefighters the desire to fundraise was personal.



“We see many medical flights come and go.”


“Our hearts go out to families needing specialist care for their wee ones.”


Cardboard props to wear on the day, include planes, a three-person helicopter and a fire appliance, have been created to wear by staff over the last month.



"..[an] opportunity to do something that has its lighthearted side for an important cause is something we’re very much on board with.”


“I think our costumes will definitely raise some smiles,” King said.


Airport chief executive Stuart Harris said they often see [affected] families passing through the airport and the efforts the airport fire team was going to for the fundraiser was fantastic.



Invercargill Airport Operations Lead Corey Diack is also aiming to raise $1000 by running and biking 210km over the course of March.


The Invercargill Airport Fire team was currently close to its $500 goal but was keen to raise as much as possible.


Supporters can donate at https://housetohouse.org.nz/t/invercargill-airport-fire.


The seven-strong firefighting team aims to start walking the runway in a range of costumes from around 1.30pm, Sunday 17th March.




The Southland App
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