Aviation Sans Frontières is represented throughout France by three regional divisions which participate in the main activities of the association. Integrated into the community at the local level, the three divisions help to increase the reach of the organisation. These decentralised representations of Aviation Sans Frontières also allow it to benefit from the specific potential of each region and thus help to develop the organisation’s social and humanitarian efforts.
Additionally, as part of the Ailes du Sourire programme, 16 local offices* across France, offer discovery flights to disabled persons.
* Abbeville, Angers, Beaune, Biarritz, Bordeaux, Dijon, La Ferté-Alais, Nancy, Perpignan, Quimper, St-Omer, Sarlat, Strasbourg, Toussus-Le-Noble, Valence et La Réunion
Aviation Sans Frontières West
Based in the city of Nantes, Aviation Sans Frontières West is spread over five départements. Bernard Checcaglini, head of the region, leads this division with the help of around 30 volunteers.
- 25 escort missions leaving from Nantes Atlantique Airport for children suffering from heart defects
- the participation of 62 people with disabilities in Ailes du Sourire (Wings for Smiles) events
- the participation of 37 teenagers in five e-Aviation sessions
Aviation Sans Frontières Midi-Pyrénées
It was only natural that Aviation Sans Frontières should operate from Toulouse, the French capital of aeronautics. Aviation Sans Frontières Midi-Pyrenees was thus born in the city in 1999, under the initiative of Jean-Michel Proust.
After setting up the Ailes du Sourire programme, the division began dispatching health care parcels to regional humanitarian associations in the year 2000. At the same time, the first escorts for sick children were arranged between Toulouse and Paris, and the organisation started to organise its freight activity. Today, this division, led by Patrick Bruneau, is supported by around 30 volunteers.
- 16 escorts for sick children, leaving from Toulouse-Blagnac Airport
- the dispatch of 16 tons of freight
- 51 flights for 93 people with disabilities taking part in the Ailes du Sourire (Wings for Smiles) programme
- 3 e-Aviation days
The e-Aviation programme started in this region during the winter of 2014.
Aviation Sans Frontières South-East
Aviation Sans Frontières South-East was created by Jean-Michel Delfosse in 2000. Based in Aix-en-Provence at the Aix-Les-Milles airfield, this division is made up of 40 volunteers. It actively takes part in organising Ailes du Sourire events, forwarding health care parcels and arranging escorts for sick children. The volunteers also organise events aiming to raise the funds required to finance their actions. Martine Mabilat has been the head of this division since 2013.
- 19 escorts for sick children, leaving from Marseille Provence Airport
- the dispatch of 1270 parcels
- 15 Ailes du Sourire events attended by 122 people
Translation into English by Julian Malacan
Proof-reading in English by Chloe Anderson within the initiative PerMondo that is coordinated by the translation agency Mondo Agit