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The Air Ambulance Service shortlisted as a finalist for the Smee & Ford Legacy Giving Awards 2024!

The Air Ambulance Service is delighted to announce that the Legacy Fundraising Team has been shortlisted for Excellence in Donor Journey & Pledger Stewardship, Internal Collaboration Champions and Katie Salisbury, the charity’s Legacy and In Memory Executive has been shortlisted for the Legacy Fundraising Professional of the Year (Income over £3m) at the Smee & Ford Legacy Giving Awards 2024, recognising and celebrating their outstanding achievement and skill in the legacy sector.

Being shortlisted for a Smee & Ford Legacy Giving Award provides the Legacy Fundraising Team with an independent validation of their hard work and commitment to legacy giving and helps to benchmark achievements with peers across the UK. This much deserved recognition has helped to promote their success and demonstrates how we’re helping reward the skill and dedication of the people involved in this vital sector.

The award entries were reviewed and assessed by a judging panel that includes some of the biggest names from across the charitable legacies community. To be shortlisted as a finalist for these awards, despite tough competition from a pool of brilliant applications, is a mark of real achievement for The Air Ambulance Service. The Legacy Fundraising Team have been selected based on matching the criteria for Excellence, Innovation and Impact and attributing scores against a transparent system aimed at recognising and rewarding inspirational legacy teams and individuals.

The Air Ambulance Service’s main objective for entering the awards is to celebrate the achievements made within the Legacy and In Memory Team over the last 18 months. We are very proud that our hard work has been acknowledged by being shortlisted for three awards.

Our donor journey and pledger stewardship has centered around legacy events, where we invite our supporters to come and learn more about different areas of our charity. We utilised venues which support the charity to keep costs low and have generated pledges worth many times this amount from these events, with one generous supporter deciding to pledge 100% of their estate to our charity.

In 2023, there was a huge focus on internal engagement for legacies to recognise the importance of the team’s involvement in helping to promote legacy giving across the charity and steward the supporters into becoming pledgers. We achieved significant engagement and support through workshops, collateral and a full day conference dedicated to legacies.

Katie has led on all activities along with leading on the charity wide legacy promotional week called Gifts in Wills Week, revamped our social media promotion and external collateral, and has worked collaboratively with all different areas of the charity. Her work has been shared amongst the sector and she is always keen to help others where she can. She has done all this whilst still being relatively new to the sector having joined us two and a half years ago, having no previous experience in legacies or charities.

“We are incredibly proud to have been shortlisted for multiple awards and we have come a long way over the past 18 months and have made some amazing achievements within our team, which we are determined to continue. The funds we receive from our Legacy and In Memory supporters are vital to keep our services operational and to keep saving lives in Warwickshire, Northamptonshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland and nationally for our Children’s service,” said Legacies and In Memory Manager for the charity, Chloe Bass.

Polly Avgherinos, Managing Director, Smee & Ford: “We extend our congratulations to the Legacy Fundraising Team for their nomination in the category of Excellence in Donor Journey & Pledger Stewardship, Internal Collaboration Champions and the Legacy Fundraising Professional of the Year (Income over £3m) at the upcoming Smee & Ford Legacy Giving Awards. We eagerly anticipate their presence at the April ceremony, where we will come together to acknowledge and celebrate the remarkable talent, dedication, and enthusiasm of individuals contributing to the field of legacies. Their impactful work on behalf of legators, charities, and beneficiaries deserves recognition and appreciation.”

The winners will be selected following a rigorous judging stage ahead of the Smee & Ford Legacy Giving Awards ceremony. The full list of nominees for the 2024 Smee & Ford Legacy Giving Awards can be found on 5th February at

The selected winners will be announced during a private ceremony at Hilton Bankside, London, on 18th April 2024.

To learn more about the charity or to donate visit: or call 0300 3045 999.