A paramedic hoping to carry out a random act of kindness became the target of one herself when a local dairy owner realised what she was doing.

The St John staffer is understood to have been called to an emergency in the South Auckland suburb of Otara some time yesterday evening.

Afterwards, she stopped at Velvet Dairy, on Velvet Cres, which happens to be famous among locals as the owner dresses up as Batman and carries out random acts of kindness in the community.

The owner - who only wanted to be known as Batman - told the Herald the paramedic walked into his store about 6.45pm, shortly before closing time.

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"She bought some bread, cheese, peanut butter, jam."

The owner said he had planned to give her the items for free as he thought she was getting some food for dinner in between jobs.

so this just happened, a ambulance pulled up, the driver pops in and starts buying groceries. so I asked "dinner?" she...

Posted by Random Acts Of Batman on Monday, 2 September 2019

"I didn't bother counting it up because I was always going to donate it."

But he was taken aback at what she told him.

"I asked, 'dinner?' She replies: 'No, buying for a family down the road'."

The paramedic, in turn, was then taken by surprise by the owner's generosity.

"I thought it was for her dinner - which I was going to shout her...but when she told me what it was for, it was 100 per cent going to happen anyway.

"She was kind of shocked. I go: 'It's just what we do. Don't worry about it'."

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A St John paramedic was spotted buying groceries for a needy family in Otara, South Auckland. Photo / Velvet Dairy
A St John paramedic was spotted buying groceries for a needy family in Otara, South Auckland. Photo / Velvet Dairy

He has lived in the area for more than 30 years and wrote about the experience on his popular Random Acts of Batman Facebook page.

He also included a photo of the bag of groceries and one showing the St John ambulance parked next to his Batmobile, which has the number plate: DARKNT.

The owner said he was grateful he could help her help others in the community.

"She's the one that obviously went to the family and was gonna pay for it anyway, so it's more her than me.

"I'm pretty sure [paramedics] don't get paid much and she's using her own money.

"I'm gonna guess that's probably not the first time she's done it, but probably the first time she got it donated."

The Velvet Dairy is well-known among locals as it is filled with Batman memorabilia and collectables that customers can see when they come in.

Local hero: The Velvet Dairy owner, known as Batman, is known for his random acts of kindness. Photo / Velvet Dairy
Local hero: The Velvet Dairy owner, known as Batman, is known for his random acts of kindness. Photo / Velvet Dairy

But he is most well-known for his work in the community - dressing up as the comic superhero to visit children in hospital and donating to various causes and events in the Otara and wider South Auckland community.

Photos on his Facebook page show him behind the counter dressed as Batman or posed as the superhero in front of the bread trays or milk fridge.

"It's not your normal dairy. We have a lot of collectables here that people can see and we actually have a secret entrance to a Batcave that sick kids can come and visit.

"I dress as Batman. We have the Batmobile, the bat-bike, we have the two Batcaves. We visit kids with terminal illnesses and we just do random things for people," he said.

"We just do random things for people because why not? To make the world a better place, you've got to start somewhere."