Financing the efficient operation of any concern is never easy. When the necessary funds are sourced only from donations, and when the officers of the ‘business’ are all volunteers, the task is even harder! Nevertheless, through the generous efforts of many the ‘Hope Cove Life Boat’ is afloat and sailing. However, to keep the boat on a steady course, more help is needed.
Any charity, but especially ours whose sole purpose is to ‘protect and save lives’ encounters high running and maintenance costs to provide a first class service. Consequently to give you some idea of the sort of sums we need to raise annually, the following might be helpful.
Crew equipment includes a dry suit which costs around £350.00, a life jacket which costs around £400.00 and various accessories such as gloves, boots and protective under suits which together cost around £150.00. Each crew member will need this equipment, and at the moment there are 12 crew members! Additionally, there are around 6 shore based crew who need the protective clothing, so to provide all this is quite a hefty outlay for starters.
Each crew member needs a pager, which costs around £50.00 per year, a hand held radio which costs around £150.00, and there is of course, a variety of radio and electronic navigational equipment on the boat which costs in the region of £2000.00.
Professional services, such as legal advice, help with the very necessary insurance policies in place, and assistance with essential safety management systems incurs high costs, in excess of £10,000.00 per year. We also require specialist help with servicing of the boat engines, surveying the boat to maintain designated safety levels and the very important maintenance of our launching equipment including the tractor and trailer. Together, these cost around £2000.00.
Of course, one must never forget the fuel costs, and the replacement of simple but essential boat items such as towing ropes, anchors, flares, warps, first aid equipment, etc.
In addition to all of the costs above, one has to consider the eventual replacement of large capital items. We replaced the boat in 2013 at a cost of over £100,000.00 all raised locally. We are now trying to build a ‘sinking’ fund to to replace the engines in the shorter term and the boat in the longer time frame. Our other major focus is housing for the boat and equipment as we currently rent space in the MCA building from the Treasury, but who knows what will happen if the government decides to make more reductions in its expenditure. Therefore, we are prudently trying to build an investment fund to cater for this.
One doesn’t need a mathematical degree to work out the necessity of continual fund raising. Many individuals, groups, business concerns, based locally and much further afield have been tremendous with their support. However, much more is needed, and should you feel you can help in any way, no matter how small, do please get in touch.