Hawke's Bay residents are encouraged to dig deep to support children with injury and illness.

With performances from Takah Early Learning Centre, and Hastings Boys' High School Barbershop Quartet, and support from Magpies players Tiaan Falcon, Marino Mikaele Tu'u, Jonah Lowe and Mason Emerson, the Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal was launched yesterday at Hawke's Bay Hospital.

In its 10th year, organisers hope the appeal can this year raise $1.1 million, taking the overall total to more than $10 million.

Donations received from previous appeals have gone towards providing crucial medical equipment to 11 hospitals around the country, as well as play equipment to keep children's spirits up when they are in hospital fighting illness and injury

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Since 2008, Hawke's Bay Hospital has received more than $600,000, and equipment including Sensory Modulation Equipment, MRI & CT Scanners, and two CTG Machines.

Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal chairwoman Ruth Krippner said most children would visit hospital at some stage, and Countdown was proud to play a part in helping provide these hospitals with the equipment needed.

The appeal runs from August 1 until October 23.

Kiwis can support kids battling illness and injury by making a donation to the appeal at their local countdown store, or online, or by engaging in local activities and raffles.