For the last 20 years, Ergon Energy Retail and its customers have raised over $15 million for the Flying Doctor in Queensland, keeping the RFDS aircraft in the air and saving lives. Thank you to everyone who supports us through this amazing initiative.
Growing up in Charleville, the Flying Doctor was ‘just a part of life’ for Brent Alexander. But, back then, he could never have imagined the critical role our service would play in his family’s life.
Brent’s son, Dougal, was only six months old, when Brent and his wife, noticed a small lump on the side of his neck. After a trip to the doctor and a worrying couple of nights in Charleville Hospital, little Dougal’s condition began to deteriorate. Brent recalls: “He was on an IV drip and an antibiotic drip, but he wasn’t responding to any treatment. The original lump had got bigger and he had lumps all over his face. It was extremely scary”.
Dougal urgently needed specialist pediatric care in Brisbane, a full day’s drive away. The Flying Doctor was called, and Brent’s wife traveled in the plane with her seriously ill son. Brent jumped in the car with their daughter Clara and began the grueling drive to Brisbane – a trip that took less than three hours by plane.
After 11 days in hospital, Dougal made a full recovery and was able to travel back home to Charleville with his grateful family.
Dougal is now a happy, healthy 2½ year old – a bit of a handful, by all accounts. But dad Brent is all too aware of how different things could have been: “I was raised in Charleville, I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else, but our experience with Dougal made us realise just how essential the Flying Doctor is for people like us who live rurally. We wouldn’t feel safe if we didn’t have them.” Brent supports the Flying Doctor whenever he can, including donating regularly through his Ergon Energy Retail electricity bill. He’s seen first-hand the difference the RFDS service can make.
To learn more about Ergon Energy Retail partnership with the RFDS (Queensland Section) click here.