Monday, September 16, 2013

Local charity to host scavenger hunt to benefit MAMA

In an innovative move to increase awareness of the Mountain Area Medical Airlift (MAMA) program and raise funds to expand MAMA, Mission Foundation is kicking off its first-ever scavenger hunt via its Facebook page starting Sept. 21, 2013. The winner will receive a 10-inch, hand carved and painted replica of a MAMA helicopter, a prize valued at approximately $300.

“The MAMA scavenger hunt is an infusion of fun and community involvement into our campaign to expand the breadth of the MAMA program and the vital emergency services it provides to our region,” said Bruce Thorsen, president of Mission Foundation. “MAMA and Mission Foundation have tremendous fan bases on Facebook, and the scavenger hunt is designed to engage them, provide information about this vital program and incite them to give to help us reach our $2 million goal.”

The first clue will be posted on Fri., Sept. 20 on Mission Foundation’s Facebook page. More clues will be posted on Saturday, and each clue will include fun facts about MAMA. Fans will weave their way in and around Asheville in search of the prize. For every new “like” on the Foundation’s Facebook page during the scavenger hunt, a dollar will be donated, up to $500, to the Foundation for the MAMA campaign. Existing fans may give online by clicking on the dollar sign on the Mission Foundation Facebook page or at

“It’s really easy to participate,” Thorsen said. “Simply become our fan on Facebook and follow the clue posts on Saturday. When a fan has figured out where the prize is hidden, the fan will simply go to the location in hopes that the location is right and he or she is the first one to find it. And throughout the day, fans will learn more about MAMA and how they can help expand it.”

MAMA’s expansion includes upgrading and up-fitting its two helicopters with state-of-the-art avionics, lifesaving technology and safety equipment. It will also include new all-weather hangers, new hanger equipment, fuel systems and generators, and new MAMA command center equipment, including radios, video systems, weather radar, blood refrigerators and pilot accommodations. Because of a projected increase of 400 flights this year stemming from new growth and development, MAMA officials are also exploring the possibility of acquiring a third helicopter to better serve the 17-county region the service covers.

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