Countdown Appeal creates ‘nest of wellbeing’ in Children’s Ward

An isolation room with direct access to a private outdoor space in Hawke’s Bay Hospital’s children’s ward is making life more bearable for immune-compromised children and their whānau.

The space, which was at the top of Hawke’s Bay Hospital’s wish list during the 2017 Countdown Kids’ Appeal was granted in full at the time with $80,500 donated toward renovations for the space, as well as $32,848.56 for the purchase of a colposcope for the paediatric ward.

Te Whatu Ora Te Matau a Māui Hawke’s Bay Paediatric Clinical Nurse Manager, Michelle Robertson, said today the space was a long-held dream by colleagues and to see it finally come to fruition was immense.

“Before renovations children with compromised immunity were in a small room at the end of the ward isolated from other ward facilities,” said Mrs Robertson.

“Now, thanks to the hugely generous donation by the Countdown Kids’ Hospital Appeal, we have a dedicated isolation room which includes a small kitchenette, ensuite and lounge area, as well as direct access to a small outdoor deck/private entrance where our patients and whānau can enjoy fresh air and sunshine without compromising their weakened immune system.”

Raising money toward the small decking area for the space was also thanks to a fundraising initiative by local man Daniel Lee who shaved his dreads for the cause after receiving life-saving paediatric care in Hawke’s Bay Hospital when he was younger. The event, aired by The Hits – Hawke’s Bay, saw many additional local sponsors get on board (*listed below).

Mrs Robertson said the build was complex and, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it took longer than expected. Once complete the room was blessed and aptly named  “Te Kohanga Ora  – The Nest of Wellbeing”. The hospital was finally in a position to start accepting patients into the room earlier this year.

Countdown Group Manager Wayne Dohmen said the Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal, which ran for 13 years, was a huge success with communities generously getting behind the campaign.

“Countdown colleagues and loyal hospital appeal supporters here in the region played a huge role toward the success of these campaigns which saw more than $900,000 donated to Hawke’s Bay Hospital’s Children’s Ward over the years where every dollar donated in the region, stayed in the region,” he said.

“As a business we are humbled to have been able to help many sick Kiwi kids and their families over the years by providing hospitals with the funds to buy equipment or make a child’s stay more comfortable.

“To visit the Children’s Ward to see and hear how grateful the team and families are for the isolation space becoming a reality is really heart-warming and the epitome of what the Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal was all about.”


Outdoor Space sponsors, supported by The Hits Hawke’s Bay were:

  • Daniel Lee
  • Wayne Kirk
  • Rome Walker
  • Ru & Kate Gaddum
  • Rose & John Roil
  • Andrew Moltzen
  • Kirsten Hines
  • Hawthorne Coffee Roasters
  • Giblin Group
  • Ben Gaddum
  • A B de Lautour Charitable Trust
  • Mark Williams – Flexilights
  • Woodford House
  • Hannah Wilson
  • HB Child Cancer
  • Condin Family


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