A team of five industry professionals have formed a new non-profit organization, Sky Hope Network, to offer business aviation support in emergencies.
Sky Hope founder Robin Eissler, Vice-President of Jet Quest, Inc., was a critical player in the Corporate Aviation Responding to Emergencies (C.A.R.E.) relief efforts that responded in 2005 to Hurricane Katrina’s aftermath and to the earthquake in Haiti earlier this year. Also key to C.A.R.E.’s Haiti missions were founding Sky Hope board members Sean Anthony, Windsor Jet Management, and Eric Zipkin, Tradewind Aviation. During the Haiti aftermath, Eissler, Anthony, Zipkin and others coordinated more than 800 flights on business jets, transporting more than 4,000 passengers and over 1.2 million pounds of critically-needed supplies. Anthony was key to the ground support efforts in the U.S. and created a supply warehouse to help aircraft launch with necessary resources. Zipkin was on the front lines in Haiti and he and his company flew over 70 roundtrip missions to Haiti in the first four weeks following the earthquake. After involvement with these and other relief efforts, Eissler was inspired to found Sky Hope with this simple mission: “Use the power of business aviation to solve problems during emergencies and urgent situations.”
Sky Hope has three pillars upon which its work will be based – to coordinate business aviation relief flights during both small and large scale disasters; to provide coordination and referrals of flight requests for urgent or emergency situations through Sky Hope’s aircraft network or by working with other flight charity organizations; and to offer emergency assistance, both flight and non-flight related, for people in the business aviation community.
Sky Hope is counting on the business aviation community to help it grow and succeed and needs donations of flights, funds and time, according to officials, who note the use of donated aircraft is the heart of Sky Hope and volunteer aircraft owners and pilots make missions possible. Volunteers are also needed to act as flight advocates, ground support personnel, and administrative staff.
For more information: Sky-Hope.org