Online radio station raising money and awareness of Blood Bikes arriving in July
A Manchester motorcyclist is attempting to launch a new online radio station to help raise money for the Blood Bike charities, as well as greater awareness to the services they provide.
"It’s basically an opportunity to promote the work that we all do, rather than just advertise one group and also promote the work that the Nationwide Association of Blood Bikes (NABB) do, as well," station founder, Paul Redfern, told MCN. "The idea is to get interviews and Blood Bikers from across the country to do their bit."
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Based in Hyde, Manchester, Paul came up with the idea for Blood Bikes Radio by drawing on his previous experience as a presenter on BIKERfm – an online station dedicated to music and motorcycling. He also founded Blood Bikes Manchester in 2011 and has remained the trustee and chairman since.
Hoping it will bring additional exposure to the charities and educate the public further about their services, Paul says the first show will hit the airwaves on Wednesday, July 1, at 7pm, however still needs more volunteers to get involved.
"A lot of people think we are part of the NHS, but we are there to assist them," he continued. "Of course, Blood Bikers do it free of charge and offer their time free of charge. One of the aims of the station is to boost public awareness of this.
"One thing we really need is presenters. It’s voluntary - just like the Blood Bikes - but it could be anything from a one-hour show once a week, to a podcast recording every week."
Calling upon his past presenting experience, Paul believes the station will cost around £1500 a year to run and is looking for sponsors and advertisers to get involved to help with the expense. Merchandise will also be available to help with funding, with a website and mobile apps currently in development.
For more information now, head to the station's Facebook page.
Blood Bikers struggle for funding during coronavirus
With public mass-gatherings still prohibited due to the ongoing threat of coronavirus, UK Blood Bike charities have experienced huge financial losses, with the majority of their regular fund-raising cancelled, due to taking place at large events and in crowded public spaces.
In mid-April, the Chairman of the Nationwide Association of Blood Bikes (NABB), John Stepney, claimed that the UK charities could collectively lose between £170,000 and £200,000 a month during the crisis and says that the situation still remains similar.
"The backdrop for all our fundraising is still in a precarious situation because it relies on people getting together," Stepney told MCN in a recent interview. "That aspect has still got an uncertain future.
"The support we’ve had from the biking community has been fantastic," he continued. "We really don’t know how long this is going to go on for and it’s the uncertainty that’s causing the greatest concern."
End of the Garden Rally
In an attempt to help raise some additional funds, bikers Andy Kay and Rob Bones have teamed up to create the 'End of the Garden Rally' – encouraging riders to get into the spirit of a weekend rally from home.
To celebrate the idea, they’ve been selling patches, with all the profits going to charity. So far over 1800 have gone, with the NHS COVID-19 appeal receiving £10,000 and another £3000 going to Blood Bikes. If you want to get involved, head to their website, where you can buy a patch and join in.