Go Orange - Friday the 18th
In case you see Orange ribs, flags and support vessels / buildings tomorrow.
For one day only the independent lifeboat crews of the United Kingdom will be joining forces on Friday, 18th February 2011 to raise awareness for the lifeboat stations that operate outside the auspices of the RNLI.
Throughout the UK there are around 100 lifeboat units that are run by independent lifeboats throughout the UK and not by the RNLI and every year their volunteer crews respond to pager callouts.
Solent Rescue originally established in 1971 as a beach rescue unit operated by auxiliary coastguards, has since developed into a fully operational independent lifeboat station, which operates under the direct control of HM Coastguard and is responsible for approximately 33 square miles of the central and western Solent.
Training is to the same high standard and all our rescue craft must adhere to the same strict code as the RNLI, the crew members you see out on the boats and in the watch room windows are the whole team, not only responding to emergencies at sea and on the shores nearby, we are also responsible for their own fundraising, training and maintenance of our equipment.
Independent Lifeboat Units within the UK have existed for many years and need support to continue to run at the same high standard at which they have become renowned. Often mistaken as the RNLI the work of these units can go unnoticed, or the public will donate to the RNLI thinking that this money is going towards their local Independent Unit.
Our hope is that by all celebrating being Independent on the same day we can highlight the number of non RNLI units around raising awareness for our causes.
We urge everybody who has an Independent lifeboat unit around them to join in with the day by wearing something orange or holding an “orange” fundraising event and donating the funds rose to their local lifeboat unit.
We will never be as large as the RNLI, but our services in the areas we operate are just as crucial and with rising costs every year it is more important now than ever for our local communities to realise just who we are.
So please for one day only join us as we unite and help raise funds for all these volunteer run lifeboat stations throughout the United Kingdom.
Remember the RNLI are “NOT the only charity that saves lives at sea”