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When every second counts

SAVES (Skaneateles Ambulance Volunteer Emergency Service) will be reaching out to the community in the week of Nov. 1 looking for contributions to 'Coming to the Rescue', the volunteer organization's annual fund appeal.

Success in this campaign is vital in that SAVES must raise at least 20 percent of its annual budget of some $400,000 through charitable contributions in order to remain viable and financially stable.

Unlike the Skaneateles Volunteer Fire Department, SAVES does not receive prescribed county and town tax revenue based on property assessment. It depends on some private billing, negotiated third party payments from Medicare and other insurance companies and discretionary municipal grants to meet the other 80 percent of its annual operating costs. The missing 20 percent can only be made up by donations from local residents and businesses, donations that reflect, on the part of the donor, an understanding and appreciation for the fact that if SAVES were not there for us

24/7, 365 days a year, the wait time for an ambulance call would be at least three to four times as long. A SAVES ambulance, equipped with state of the art medical gear and professional staff, is more than an emergency transport system - it is an emergency room on wheels!

During the past year SAVES answered more than 900 emergency calls and logged more than 10,000 hours of volunteer help to assist the modest staff of full-time and part-time Certified Advanced Life Support paramedics who ride the rigs. SAVES also needs you to do your part in this partnership; one which benefits all of those in our community who may have need of emergency medical care.

When you get your letter from SAVES in these next few weeks, don't toss it aside. Rather reflect for a moment on how important it is to have such a dedicated volunteer emergency service right here and consider supporting the organization's effort as generously as you can.

Checks made out to 'Coming to the Rescue' Annual Fund can be sent directly to SAVES at 77 Fennell Street, Skaneateles, NY 13152.

Submitted by Daniel Labeille

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