Coastguard runs on fumes after $40K budget hit
Answering calls for help, day and night, the volunteers in blue and yellow have now issued their own call for assistance.
Coast Guard QF6 Mooloolaba has been hit hard by COVID-19.
The volunteer organisation has lost about $40,000 in fundraising revenue since the start of the global pandemic.
Deputy commander Rod Ashlin said the flotilla had gone for almost a year with virtually no funds raised.
"That's probably cost us about $40,000," Mr Ashlin said.
"All our raffles had to cease because we couldn't sell raffle tickets.
"Even now most businesses will not allow you to sell raffle tickets outside their organisations.
"We don't want to ask our members, most of whom would be in the older age group to be out there dealing with the public during this period."
The volunteer said he was hopeful things would turn around shortly.
"We're doing some extra barbecues now at Bunnings now because they know we are reliable," he said.
"We're trying to pick up some but we can't pick up the money that we've lost."
The funds raised by the organisation go towards maintenance of the vessel, the office and other projects to assist the Coast Guard.
"We put that money to good use," he said.
"One example of that is we put up a camera on the lighthouse tower at Point Cartwright.
"So that camera now covers the entrance and quite a deal of the coastline and it's already proven to be a very handy.
"We've been able to talk a few people in as well when the bar has been shallow because we can see them on the camera."
Good work doesn't come cheap though.
"That cost us $35,000 to do, which you could argue that's something maybe the government should have picked up," Mr Ashlin said.
"But we paid for that out of our own funds.
"Whatever money we are able to raise goes to good use."