A memory popped up on the timeline of Andy, one of our members recently. St Valentine’s Day is traditionally a time when people think of spending time with their significant others. Ironically this memory told of a meeting on 14th February 2011 where a small group of bikers plotted ways to spend more time away from theirs. This meeting, 9 years ago today was the inaugural meeting, of what would become Blood Bikes Wales.
Andy, Darren, and Bernard are still with us and I hope they find if wonderful to see the service still in operation, still doing what they set out to do, and more.
But to all those riders who head out when most of us are heading home. To the controllers who wait next to the phone for the NHS to call for assistance or a rider to check-in. To the collectors who stand next to a bucket with a welcome smile. To the backroom heroes who do the training, admin, merchandise and all the other little jobs that keep the charity going. To all the members past and present who built on that first, small meeting, thank you.
“This very day three years ago saw a group of bikers come together in the Dynevor Arms in Groes Faen. It was the start of what we now know as Blood Bikes Wales. It’s been quite an eventful process, getting this charity up and running and we’re all be proud of what we’ve achieved.
Soon we’ll have carried out 300 deliveries in the Swansea area alone, saving ABMUHB more than £20,000. Yet there are still departments that don’t know about us, so these figures will increase again.
We haven’t started counting the savings to Aneurin Bevan yet but they will be considerable. Cwm Taf (fingers crossed) will go live on the 14th of this month, allowing us to make a difference to even more communities. Hywel Dda, the far West of Wales, have pledged they will use us as soon as due process has been followed. Cardiff and Vale are also in talks.
All this activity can be looked at in two ways. Firstly, some would comment on the money we save. Yes, it’s great, and I would estimate that across the whole of South Wales we could save the NHS £300,000 per annum.
Secondly, one could discuss the quality of our service. We are there for one purpose only, to deliver. The commitment you riders have shown through the diabolical weather we’ve had this winter has been nothing short of heroic. 99.99% of requests have been fulfilled and that alone is something to be proud of. We’re a volunteer organisation delivering a professional service and we take some beating.
But there is one other way of looking at what we do and it doesn’t involve £ signs and zeros, it doesn’t involve statistics either. It’s the feeling we get when we’ve helped someone else, someone in need.
Look no further than yesterday’s post from Alan Harper, he said it beautifully, thank you Alan.
It’s what I feel that keeps me dedicated, that makes me smile at stupid o’clock as I ride down the M4 in a squall. It’s the promise I make each time I put on that jacket.
I had the privilege of taking milk to Withybush Special Care Baby Unit the other day and the appreciation of the nurses was very moving. But the thing that got me was how big a part those little bottles of milk would play in the lives of those premature babies.
Rest assured that, no matter what role we play, we are all making and will continue to make a big difference in our communities for the people that are in need.
Happy birthday everyone!