Countdown kids appeal raises $1.26m

This year's Tauranga Countdown ambassador Te Ariki Berryman with his parents Ang and Riki Berryman in the Paediatric Ward in Tauranga Hospital. Photo: Sharnae Hope.

The Countdown Kids' Hospital Appeal has raised an impressive $1.26 million for 13 children's wards nationwide.

The twelve-week appeal finished on October 29 with all proceeds used to buy much needed medical equipment to help Kiwi kids around the country.

In the 11 years Countdown has run the appeal, more than $11.6 million has been raised and between 2008 and 2016, Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal has helped donate $780,000 to Tauranga Hospital.

Countdown stores across the country organised local events to bring the community together and help raise funds for the appeal.

Countdown Bay of Plenty did activities, such as sold raffle books, facebook sponsorship, and climbed the Mount.

“We rely on our staff to push it, and the reception and the commitment we get from them all is absolutely outstanding,” says a Countdown Whakatane Spokesperson.

“Not only does it make a difference for the kids, but it also makes a real difference to our teams they can walk out of here and feel like they've done something for the community and the future of New Zealand.”

Other events nationwide included a country dance night in Kaiapoi, joining a family motorbike and car poker run in Waikiwi, dressing up for a charity ball in Whanganui, and organising a classic ‘grocery grab' in Blockhouse Bay, Auckland.

Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal spokesperson Ruth Krippner says the success of this year's campaign is thanks to the enthusiasm and ongoing support of local communities across the country.

“Every year there are thousands of Kiwi kids that need hospital care which is always an extraordinarily hard time for children and their families.

“The success of this year's campaign shows a desire within communities to help these children in their time of need and get them home,” says Ruth.

This year some of the equipment on the 13 children's wards wish lists included a Cardiovascular Ultrasound machine to measure heart rate, a Colposcope for internal examination, a Neonatal Video Laryngoscope to examine the throat and a Wireless Fetal Monitoring System to monitor fetal heart rate.

Cheque presentations will take place over the next few weeks to present the participating hospitals with funds from this year's appeal.

A cheque will be presented to the Bay of Plenty DHB at Countdown Fraser Cove on Tuesday, December 5 at 10.30am.

The total amount being presented is revealed on the day and will go towards much needed medical equipment for the Tauranga and Whakatane Hospital to help get Kiwi kids home from hospital faster.


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