The Lifeboat Fund was founded in 1866 and is an official charity of the Civil Service, with support from employees and former staff of the Royal Mail and British Telecom. The Fund's sole aim is to support the work of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.
The charity benefits from donations given by serving and retired employees, and from legacies. Civil servants the length and breadth of the UK organise fundraising collections, hold raffles and coffee mornings, and carry out sponsored activities to support and promote the RNLI's life-saving work.
The Fund is the single largest regular contributor to the RNLI, which is run wholly on voluntary donations and legacies. Since it began, the Fund has bought 52 lifeboats for the RNLI, which have together saved over 4,700 lives.
The total gifted by The Fund to the RNLI in 2011 was £200,000, helping to train and equip the volunteer lifeboat crews. Its 2012 Appeal spread the benefit of its fundraising - buying new lifejackets, training lifeguards and maintaining boats it has purchased. In 2013, the appeal seeks to purchase a full kit for a crew member at every lifeboat station in Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The number of lifeboat launches has more than doubled in the last 10 years, with 2011 proving to be the RNLI's second busiest year ever - for launches, for the time crews spent at sea and for lifeguard activity. The Lifeboat Fund's lifeboats were used to rescue more than 140 people, five of whom owe their lives to the brave volunteers who crew these boats.
Find out more at the charity's website: http://www.thelifeboatfund.org.uk/
Read the charity's entry in the Scottish Charity Register.