The HELP Fund was originally established by the Alberta Paramedic Association (Association) as a pre-organized crowdsourced, pass the hat type fund for families who fell victim of a Line of Duty Death (LODD).
In its original design, one of our past executive members, envisioned the HELP Fund as a machine that would automatically launch in the event of a tragic loss of anyone within our Alberta family of paramedics. Over the years, the HELP Fund progressed to a point that while the Association’s “Heart” was in the right place, it was decided that it would be important for family to engage the Association either directly or indirectly in order to create a launch.
Throughout the years, the HELP Fund launched multiple times, for many paramedics. Including the one paramedic executive member whose heart inspired the fund. Our very own Marc Moebis. We miss him greatly.
One of the reasons the decision was to increase the membership fees this year was not only to adjust for professional costs needed by the Association like IT etc, but also to ensure that the HELP Fund becomes fully sustainable for the future. Here is the plan.
The Association goal is to give the HELP Fund full charitable status. This means, instead of just passing the hat for families, the fund can build itself and provide charitable receipts for work and donations. Along with this, the Association will be working in 2023 on enlisting expertise from other professions to build a self-governing board that makes decisions outside the Association and can create enhanced policies and processes on eligibility and payment for the fund. This boosts the accountability and status for the fund.
One would think that developing a full charity would be easy and cheap. After all, it’s charity. It’s to help people. Well, it’s not. That’s why, whether you’re already a member or you going to Become a New Member, we’re allocating money from our membership fees towards the project. Legal Counsel, accountants, writers, etc. are needed for this project. Until it’s completed though, passing the hat is the thing we do. Heaven, forbid we lose another paramedic or a paramedic family faces a loss due to tragic circumstances. We don’t know will happen in 2023, and we pray for the safety of everyone out there, but what we do know today, and where we are headed, is that the HELP Fund will be there, if and when it’s needed.