Do they reimburse 50% of all the fuel burned? Or just fuel burned while carrying the patient?
The way this works is that you give to Hope Air your actual fuel burn once when you apply (not talking rental here). Then, after you finished your mission, you give to Hope Air your AIR time, i.e. take off to touch down. The air time is for ALL legs flown. In most cases a mission will have three legs, your home base to the patient, from there to the patient's destination, and back to your home base. You air time (for ALL legs incl. the empty ones) is multiplied with your stated fuel burn, an average fuel cost is being applied, and you will get 50% of that.
Please consider this (also a reply to "Road Trip"; does nobody have a real name here?!): If you fly for Hope Air your motivation is to give back to the community, to the people that live in Canada. Most Hope Air patients are flown on donated commercial flight seats for free. Hope Air's Volunteer Pilot Program fills an importnat niche, i.e. flying people from small communities to the centres. I have flown many missions from Sault Saint Marie to/from London. There is no air service available between these two places. And most importantly: If we don't fly these people, in most cases they will not get the required treatment at all. Period. Sad, but true. That's what it is all about.
It is NOT primarely about getting money back for your flying. This is not a place where you would build hours "for free". It is about donating your time and money to a charity. You either want to donate or not. If not, forget it. If you feel some obligation to donate, you do it. For me, I can combine this with my passion to fly. End of story.
I did get something good out of it, though. Flying Hope Air missions taught me a lot about flying in all kind of weather situations in Ontario. Just with flying around the patch and the occasional vacation I would have never, ever gained that experience. Even though I have an ATPL, one type rating, and 3500 hours, I have never been paid a penny.