Christmas came early for our Waikids team thanks to the Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal fundraising a whopping $139,750.00.
Now in its eleventh year, the money goes towards lifesaving medical equipment to care for unwell kids across Waikato DHB Hospitals.
The cheque was presented at Hamilton’s Bridge Street Countdown on Friday 2 December, whose store alone raised a staggering $31,000 – the second highest total in the country. Special thanks were given to Jeremy Pritchard and Ben Aitken who kindly donated a trailer for the raffle.
A total of 3,668 knitted items from blankets to booties were also presented to Waikato Hospital’s Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU), thanks to a loyal number of knitters across the region and one from South Africa. Countdown Te Awamutu’s store knitted the most pieces at 585 thanks to their supportive knitting group Creative Fibre.
With a number of Countdown staff at the presentation there were lots of emotions and cheers heard from the crowd with Countdown’s group manager Karl Jones, saying: “The annual Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal is great for all our team because we get to do something extra to help raise money for a very worthy cause.
“Waikids staff provide miracles to unwell kids and it’s fantastic for Countdown to be able to give back. The donation to Waikids wouldn’t be possible without the commitment from our team and loyal customers.”
Waikato DHB’s Women’s and Children’s Health director Michelle Sutherland said “Every year it feels like the team at Countdown bring more passion and enthusiasm to the appeal.
“We can’t thank all the Waikato Countdown team and customers enough for the invaluable fundraising that helps us to purchase lifesaving medical equipment.”
The Appeal helps Waikids like Chase Porter, at only several months old he’s one of the littlest battlers born with a rare and life-threatening heart condition. You can read more about Chase here.
The items on Waikato’s 2017 wish list were:
- Cardiovascular ultrasound system $137,750
Primarily situated in NICU, the cardiovascular ultrasound system is used to scan baby’s hearts and brains, giving valuable diagnostic information. The staff needed help to replace one (which was originally fundraised by the community over 10 years ago) with an increase of cardiac patients following treatment at Starship, and the need provide care closer to home.
- Giraffe Warmer for NICU $23,100
The Giraffe Warmer for NICU provides uninterrupted thermal heat, resulting in a warm and developmentally supportive environment for the baby. It gives complete access and visibility for clinical staff and parents.
Since its beginning, the Appeal has raised $11.6 million dollars for hospitals across the country, this year’s total was $1.26 million says Countdown’s acting general manager of operations Ryan McMullen.
“It makes me so proud to see all the hard work of our team and support from our customers” he says.
“Every year Waikato do a fantastic job, and really stand out with their fundraising efforts.”
More about Kids Countdown Appeal
The Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal ran from 7 August 2017 until 29 October 2017.
- Last year the Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal raised $104,070.00 for Waikato child and youth health service Waikids.
- Now in its eleventh year, the appeal raises money to go towards much needed medical equipment to help children like Chase.
- The Waikids equipment 2017 wish list is a cardiovascular ultrasound machine system and Giraffe Warmer for NICU.