Hospice appeal switches to digital donation approach

Otago Community Hospice chief executive Ginny Green. Photo: Gerard O'Brien
Otago Community Hospice chief executive Ginny Green. Photo: Gerard O'Brien
The Otago Community Hospice is hoping generous folk will toss an electronic "coin in its bucket" instead of a real one after it cancelled its annual street appeal for the second year running this year, given unpredictable dynamics and constraints.

The appeal had been scheduled to run on March 4 and 5, but has been halted under the Red traffic light setting and in anticipation of the Omicron’s outbreak hitting the South.

A Givealittle donation page had been set up to accept the type of small donation that would usually have been collected in the street appeal.

The online fundraiser had set a target of $35,000.

This was the amount typically brought in by the street appeal, collected around the province by a team of nearly 500 volunteers.

Chief executive Ginny Green said having to cancel the street appeal was "gutting".

"It’s deeply disappointing to have to cancel this appeal, but we don’t want to put our volunteers or our donors at any risk at this stage of the pandemic."

There was no way to run a street collection with volunteers and collection buckets and still maintain effective social distancing, Ms Green said.

The hospice’s fundraising team was now devising alternative fundraisers to make up the difference to its fundraising
target for the year, which had been set at $2.7million.

"It’s a creative challenge, but one we will embrace as we continue to adapt to this pandemic," Ms Green said.

She also extended her thanks to the volunteers who would have been gearing up to hit the streets with their collection buckets.

"We look forward to 2023 when, hopefully, we will be in the clear to run the street appeal."


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