Victoria Hawkins |

Every day St John responds to 1,200 calls for help; that’s nearly one call every minute.

Last year we cared for over 425,000 patients and our ambulances travelled over 19 million kilometres.

With so many people needing emergency ambulance help each year, the chances are next time it could be you or your family - your mother, your brother, your child.

St John launches its Annual Appeal campaign today with the aim of raising $2.4m to buy 12 new ambulances - ambulances that will be used by frontline paramedics to provide lifesaving care to people who are seriously sick or injured.

These modern ‘emergency clinics on wheels’ are a far cry from the various early ambulance models that were used for transporting patients during the last century – from Ashford Litters (cart stretchers)  to the highly recognisable and memorable grey and white 1940s Dodges.

“Emergency health care has developed significantly in the past 120 years - it’s an essential and expensive business.  It costs over $200,000 to get a modern ambulance on the road,” says Peter Bradley, St John Chief Executive.

“This includes the cost of the vehicle itself along with a variety of hi-tech clinical and medical equipment – mobile data terminals, stretchers, a defibrillator, heart rate monitor, specialised extraction equipment – along with ambulance officer training and uniform.”

As part of St John’s new look, these ambulances come in high visibility yellow with more reflective signage than older white models. This is to maximise visibility of the vehicles and improve safety for ambulance officers and the public on the road.

 “By making a donation to our Annual Appeal this week (6-12 April), you can help St John to continue providing lifesaving emergency services to our growing and aging population using the most advanced techniques and equipment - 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

St John staff and volunteers will be out with collection buckets throughout the country (6-12 April) or simply call 0800 ST JOHN (0800 785 646), donate online at or at any ASB branch.





  • St John is the largest primary healthcare provider in New Zealand.
  • It provides emergency ambulance services to nearly 90% of New Zealanders and covers 97% of the country’s geographical area.
  • St John is made up of a mix of full-time paid employees and volunteer staff.
  • St John was voted New Zealand’s Most Trusted Charity in the Readers Digest Most Trusted Brands Awards 2014 and paramedics came second in the Most Trusted Professions category.
  • Our community and commercial programmes range from first aid training, health shuttle services, Friends of the Emergency Department, Caring Caller telephone service, monitored medical alarms, Outreach Therapy Pets and a St John Youth Programme.
  • St John’s Annual Appeal ambulances will be distributed across New Zealand – three to our Northern Region, four to Central, and another three to the South Island.  The remaining two will be delivered later in the year.  These ambulances will carry a dedication recognising and thanking the New Zealand public for its generosity.
  • The life of a frontline emergency vehicle is about eight years.  We have approx. 700 ambulances and operational vehicles over 200 stations across the country.
  • Last year St John ambulances collectively travelled a total of 19,398,278 kilometres to save lives in New Zealand communities.




Robbie Walker

St John Senior Communications Advisor National & Northern Region

T 09 579 1015 I X 8746 I F 09 526 0553 | M 027 2909764



Mark Tregoweth

St John Communications Advisor Central Region

T 06 355 7792 I X 5792 I F 06 355 7795 | M 027 549 9568



Ian Henderson

St John Communications Advisor South Island Region

T 03 353 7110 I X 3222 I F 03 353 7112 | M 027 436 2528


Subscribe to our RSS FeedUrgent call: help fuel this vital serviceSt John first aid TrainingFeel Safe with a St John medical alarm