Will this be St John's last Annual Appeal to fund the emergency ambulance service?

BEVERLEY TSE |

St John is holding what it hopes will be its last major annual appeal to help fund its emergency ambulance service.

This week St John is asking the public to show their “hearts of gold” by donating to its Heart of Gold Annual Appeal, running from 1 – 7 April 2019.

St John has contracts with the Ministry of Health and ACC who fund just over 72% of the budgeted operating costs to run the ambulance service. The remaining 28% - over $65 million a year - is funded through emergency ambulance part charges and fundraising activities.

“We know that this level of financing isn’t sustainable and last year we put in a funding bid to Government of more than $350 million (over four years) to increase our funding levels to be fully supported.  Although we will always fundraise for our community health programmes, we want this to be the last annual appeal where we have to ask the public to donate money to run an essential emergency service,” says St John CEO Peter Bradley.

St John provides emergency ambulance services to nearly 90% of New Zealanders in 97% of the country’s geographic locations. Each year we respond to more than 476,000 emergency incidents and run a wide range of community and health services to support people living healthy, safe lives. This year, funds raised through the St John Heart of Gold Annual Appeal will go towards providing training and equipment, to support the running of the emergency ambulance service and to ensure St John can continue to be there for all New Zealanders.

Throughout the year, St John runs regular, small campaigns to raise funds. The Heart of Gold Annual Appeal is the biggest fundraising event and involves months of preparation and scores of volunteers. St John is grateful for the many businesses and schools across the country that have committed to supporting us with fundraising activities, including competitions, raffles, mufti days, bake sales and street collections. After careful consideration and consultation with our Christchurch-based clinical operations, management, area committee and fundraising teams, a decision was made to continue with a street appeal in Christchurch.

Donations can be made in any ASB branch across New Zealand, online at heartofgold.org.nz, by calling 0800 ST JOHN, or to St John & ASB volunteer collectors throughout New Zealand.

-ENDS-

 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Beverley Tse

St John Communications Advisor

M 027 318 1553

E beverley.tse@stjohn.org.nz

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