As pilots, we are lucky to see and experience things that few people ever do. We also have a very unique skill set that can do much to help improve the lives of others. In the spirit of giving back, here are seven volunteer pilot organizations that may inspire you to go wheels up for a good cause.
- Angel Flight is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) volunteer pilot organization that provides free air transport in private aircraft to children and adults in need of life-saving medical care that is not available locally. To volunteer or view a list of upcoming Angel Flight events, visit angelflitsoars.org.
- The Air Care Alliance is a nationwide association of flying organizations dedicated to humanitarian missions involving health care, patient transport and other missions for public benefit. Visit the ACA site for a list of member organizations, news and events.
- Brigade Air, Inc. is a Christian youth mentoring program that encourages young people to serve in the arena of missionary aviation. Established in 2000, Brigade Air has educated more than 2,100 campers in a total of 96 summer camp weeks over the last seven years. For more information, visit brigadeair.org.
- Emergency Volunteer Air Corp (EVAC) organizes general aviation pilots, amateur radio operators and other aviation personnel to supplement existing emergency personnel and organizations during a fire, earthquake, hurricane and other major public emergencies. For more information, visit EVAC online.
- Fly for the Cure is a non-profit organization located in Westfield, NY that provides pleasure trips to cancer sufferers and survivors across the country. Fly for the Cure is also involved in fund raising and promoting Cancer Awareness with an emphasis on the need for cancer screening and early detection. Visit fly4thecure.org to read more.
- Pilots and Paws Pet Rescue is a non-profit organization that pairs pet rescue volunteers with pilot plane owners willing to assist with the transportation of the rescued animals. Pilots and Paws helps arrange and schedule rescue flights, overnight foster care, shelter care and other related activities. To learn more, go to pilotsnpaws.org.
- The Volunteer Pilots Association provides free air transport for qualified patients who are in financial need. Pilots provide free air transport in privately owned, single engine or twin-engine, piston powered aircraft. VPA is not an ambulance service and pilots are either trained nor permitted to provide medical assistance. For more information, visit volunteerpilots.org.
- Patient Airlift Services (PALS) is a network of volunteer pilots in the Northeast United States who provide free flights for patients and caregivers in need of medical diagnosis, treatment or follow-up. PALS pilots donate their aircraft, time and pay for all expenses related to the flight with no cost to the qualifying patients and caregivers. To learn about volunteering at PALS, or to sign up for the PALS volunteer squadron, visit the PALS volunteer page.