A Letter About You, Your Group, and the Air Care Alliance!

Free Listings, Updates, and/or Member Renewals  

A Letter from Jeff and Rol:

Dear Friends and Leaders in Public Benefit Flying,

In 1990 more than one hundred representatives of twenty-five volunteer pilot groups met at AOPA headquarters to share ideas.  Out of that meeting came the Air Care Alliance, and since then, working with you, we have continued promoting, supporting, and representing public benefit flying.

During this time we have made great strides improving all our organizations by encouraging communication and cooperation among volunteer pilot groups whose members fly to help others.    

We invite you to review some of the highlights of our accomplishments in the attachment below.

Each year we ask that ACA members and non members alike update their referral information. Having current contact and service area information is critical in serving the public who needs you and your volunteer pilots, and in making sure your group receives appropriate referrals.   You can view your current Listing at http://www.aircarealliance.org/directory-groups

Please look over your information on the enclosed form, change or add to it, and return it as soon as possible.  If we do not receive a completed form verifying your group is operating we may have to delete you from our listings.    NOTE: Your listing does not require any fee or Membership in ACA.

However, many of you have been Members of the Air Care Alliance for many years.  To you we say: "Welcome back for another great year!"  We are delighted that you have chosen to continue supporting our ability to help you and all those who fly to help others.

For those who have not yet joined us, we are pleased to offer you and your volunteer pilot organization the opportunity to join ACA as a Member, and to thus enjoy sharing your achievements and concerns with others who believe general aviation can serve well their communities and those in need.

Add your voice to ours and help us present the 'Big Picture' about public benefit flying on the broad, national canvas.  By doing so you will help not only your group, but all those served by all groups, and the volunteer pilots who wish to help them.

Also note that individuals, companies, and other organizations can join ACA as Supporting Members too!

In closing, just as you extend your hand and ask others to join you in helping others, so we extend ours to you and ask you to please join us as an Air Care Alliance Member organization and thus show your support for all those who fly missions of service.  In addition to submitting your group’s information update form, please add your request for membership, sign the form, and send it in with the nominal dues.  It's probably the best investment you and your group will make all year!

Sincerely yours,

        Jeff                                   Rol

Jeff Kahn, Chairman           Rol Murrow, President

ENC:   ACA Accomplishments

Over the years ACA has attained many objectives, hoping they will help you in your and your group’s work.  Here is a list of many of them!

Referrals and Promotion: Our website www.aircarealliance.org is heavily used as a resource by organizations and individuals seeking the services provided through the groups we list. We released a completely new site with automated referral capabilities to better serve those in need.  Using the information you provide us, clients can send automated inquiries, make calls to our toll-free phone number, and send us emails so that those in need can be quickly connected with groups like yours.  That’s why our having your updated information is so important.

Annual National conference: The Air Care convention serves as an open forum for our frank discussions of issues impacting our groups and all our volunteers' work flying for the public benefit.  Since 1990 we have discussed topics that included insurance and liability concerns, the regulatory environment, safety programs, fundraising techniques, how to develop emergency preparedness programs, intergroup linking, and up to the minute administrative techniques to help make the work go more smoothly.  And we all have fun and get to develop great friendships with other leaders!

Representation with Government:  ACA representatives have provided information and testimony to regulatory agencies ensuring they understand the capabilities and roles of those flying to help others and that appropriate rules are drafted.  We were successful in preventing an attempt to outlaw charitable deductions of pilots’ expenses.  We also argued successfully in Washington D.C. against proposed Air Tour regulations that could have crippled pilots’ ability to fly charitable missions.  ACA continues work with AOPA and other parters on permitting fuel reimbursement for volunteer pilots, having achieved significant changes in the language of exemptions being granted.  ACA developed liability relief language that passed the House of Representatives twice and a version was even included in the Pilots Bill of Rights II bill.  However that language was stalled in a Senate Committee and work continues to move it forward in separate measures.

National Awards: Working with the National Aeronautic Association we have created an enduring set of national awards, presented in the U.S. Capitol Building and other venues. In addition ACA has provided guidance for and participated in the Endeavor Awards Gala Celebration held in Los Angeles and produced by Angel Flight West.  In this way we celebrate the accomplishments of public benefit flying volunteers and their groups, thus highlighting this work before Congress, prominent leaders in the Entertainment and News Media, aviation organization and agency leaders, and the public.

Media Relations: ACA enjoys an excellent relationship with aviation and general media outlets, and refers reporters to individual groups so their stories can be told.  AOPA and ACA also collaborated on a successful outreach campaign that resulted in stories about local and regional groups being presented in both print and television media seen by the public in all areas of the United States..

Safety Initiatives: The AOPA Air Safety Foundation and ACA first collaborated in the development of a safety guide for pilots and a companion video, distributed to all volunteer pilot groups in 1999. More recently the AOPA Foundation’s Air Safety Institute worked with ACA and its Members to develop an excellent online safety course geared specifically for volunteer pilots and charitable operations.  Safety continues to be a main topic at our Air Care conferences and we hope all groups keep this as the highest priority in their work with their pilots.

NTSB Approval of ACA Safety Recommendations program:  Following four accidents in 2007-8 the National Transportation Safety Board considered a recommendation to FAA to enact new regulations governing public benefit flying.  However ACA worked with the NTSB and the agency subsequently developed three main recommendations for ACA to send to the PBF groups.  ACA refined the recommendations, sent them to all the groups, and as mentioned above worked with the AOPA Foundation’s Air Safety Institute and multiple PBF groups to develop an online safety course for volunteer pilots and group staff members.  Groups adopted the recommendations and as a result the NTSB accepted these initiatives on April 25, 2016 and in addition congratulated the ACA and the groups for taking such a proactive stance.   See the excellent writeup by volunteer pilot leader Rick Durden in AVweb at this link:  
 http://www.avweb.com/news/features/Public-Benefit-Flying-Safety-Efforts-Recognized-226288-1.html
Many groups adopted the recommendations and it is in their and their pilots’ interest that ALL groups do so.

International Public Benefit Flying Call Sign “COMPASSION:” ACA worked with the FAA in Washington to draft procedures and institute an international ICAO call sign. COMPASSION may be used by all pilots in public benefit flying groups to indicate to air traffic control that they are flying patients or performing a public service mission. These procedures were the first ever to be developed, and have been used as a template by others.

Phillips 66 Aviation Fuel Discount for ACA Member Groups’ Pilots:  Some time ago Phillips 66 offered a fuel discount to several groups to explore the value of it to their members.  Since then ACA has worked with the company and in early 2017 Phillips 66 rolled out a major expansion of the program to all current ACA Member Groups whose pilots fly ambulatory patients.  We hope the volunteer pilots Member Groups’ are enjoying the discount, and believe  eventually it may be expanded to pilots flying other kinds of missions.

Representation at AOPA, EAA, and other events: ACA has regularly staffed exhibit booths or presented seminars at major aviation events, such as AOPA’s conferences and the special “Fly4Life” set of events at EAA AirVenture.

Developing Fellowship and Consensus Among Group Leaders:  Through the Air Care conference and our other initiatives we have developed our members' joint consensus and brought it to the attention of large aviation associations, government agencies, our elected officials, and the general public.  ACA seminars and literature reflecting our first-hand knowledge of the best practices and strategies are being used by various groups around the country, assisting their members in carrying on their good works.  Helping any group work better improves the results for all groups and their volunteers!

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Note:  Rick Durden wrote a nice story about the Air Care Alliance on AVweb in 2014.  See it at this link:
http://www.avweb.com/news/features/Air-Care-Alliance-The-Voice-of-Public-Benefit-Flying-221657-1.html

And of course we provide much more regarding our history, resources, and useful information on our website!  Be sure to visit our other pages on www.aircarealliance.org

Thank you for your own contributions and service in supporting
the work of your groups and their pilots in flying to help others!

 

Referral System Information and/or Membership Joining or Renewal Form:

The following form may be used by group leaders who wish to have their organizations and information listed by the Air Care Alliance and referrals made to them.  It may also be used for groups wishing to apply for ACA membership.

Form for free listing or to join ACA: click for our membership request PDF form, as well as for sending listing renewal and annual information updates.