Third big funding boost for Cranford announced

By Roger Moroney

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Round Pond's Julie Russell (left) and the Cranford team of Amanda Aitken, Janice Byford-Jones, Yvonne Gibb, Karen Franklin, Nathalie Van Dort and Mike Russell from Round Pond. Photo / Duncan Brown
Round Pond's Julie Russell (left) and the Cranford team of Amanda Aitken, Janice Byford-Jones, Yvonne Gibb, Karen Franklin, Nathalie Van Dort and Mike Russell from Round Pond. Photo / Duncan Brown

The third "leg" of a November weekend treble of events in support of Cranford Hospice came in on Tuesday - and when all three were added up it meant just over half a million dollars had gone the hospice's way.

A figure which left chief executive Janice Byford-Jones and her team smiling and grateful, and overwhelmed at what so many people across the Hawke's Bay community had voluntarily done to make it all possible.

She met with Mike and Julie Russell this week who staged the Wildflower Sculpture Exhibition at their Longlands Rd Round Pond Garden property, and they handed her the great results of it - a cheque for $70,000.

"We are really pleased with this - and we had more people through the gates this year," Mrs Russell said.

"So many people of all ages came through and they really enjoyed it, and we were able to do this for Cranford."

The previous Wildflower Sculpture Exhibition raised $50,000, so the $20,000 boost was a huge bonus.

It added to the $275,000 raised from the Holly Hospice Trail and $180,000 from the Hawke's Bay Wine Auction.

The $525,000 full result was "so very special", Ms Byford-Jones said.

"We were talking about this the other day - hospices around the country have varied events held for them but I don't think there is any other region in New Zealand that has something like this happen."

She said the operating costs for Cranford came in around $6 million a year and the Government, through the Hawke's Bay District Health Board, provided about half of that.

Cranford's three shops - in Napier, Hastings and Waipukurau - brought in around $1 million a year so the remaining $2 million had to be found through trust grants and donations.

"It is such and amazing community out there and what is also amazing is that a lot of things are going on in the background."

She said staff received calls from time to time, and out of the blue, to say a social, business or sports group had held a fundraiser for them and could they bring the money in.

A recent Watties gold tournament and a Karamu Golf Club event both supported Cranford, as did a small number of women from the Ahuriri Rotary's Inner Wheel who raised $600.

"It all adds up, and we are like anyone else - we have to pay wages and we have to pay the bills."

Mrs Russell said as well as the support it achieved for Cranford, the event had also been gratifying in terms of how it brought people together.

"To see the families all engaging and being part of it - it was really nice."

- Hawkes Bay Today

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