Hato Hone St John

NZCT has awarded the Hato Hone St John, a major grant of $400,000 for two new frontline ambulances for Selwyn and Christchurch.

Fundraising Manager Debbie Pipson says -

The grant will be used towards the purchase a new Generation 4 frontline ambulance and a new frontline VW Crafter ambulance as well as emergency medical equipment for the Selwyn and Christchurch communities.

Our ambulances are under an increasing amount of strain due to the continual increase in demand for our service. Not only are we attending more incidents every day, but also travelling further distances. We need to purchase a new fully equipped ambulance to ensure we are successfully meeting the demands of our service, using the best possible resources to make sure the best possible outcomes for every patient we treat. We also need to ensure the health and safety of our ambulances officers by giving them the best possible equipment with which to work.

Hato Hone St John provides emergency ambulance services to 90% of New Zealanders and covers 97% of the country’s geographical area and is made up of a mix of full-time paid employees and volunteer staff. We have contracts with Te Whatu Ora Health New Zealand and ACC who fund approximately 88% of the operating costs for the ambulance service. The balance on what is required to run the service is made up from ambulance part charges, third-party contracts, and fundraising.

Along with the emergency ambulance service, Hato Hone St John provides a significant number of community health programmes and initiatives which help build community resilience. They include Health Shuttles, Caring Caller, Friends of the Emergency Department, St John Youth, ASB St John in Schools, and Therapy Pets.

Hato Hone St John also delivers event health services, medical alarm services, first aid training and operates retail stores across the country.

We are honoured to have earned the title of New Zealand's Most Trusted Charity multiple times and again in 2023. St John carefully ensures all donations and grants are managed appropriately and directed to where they are most needed. This award confirms the trust the New Zealand public has in St John and reinforces our commitment to integrity.

Hato Hone St John is extremely grateful for the $400,000 from NZCT. It will go towards two new vehicles for the emergency ambulance service in Canterbury - a new Generation 4.1 ambulance for the team in Selwyn district and a new VW Crafter ambulance for Christchurch Metro. Both vehicles will start operation early next year. The demand for ambulance services continues to increase throughout Aotearoa New Zealand and this generous grant from NZCT will help us not only to continue serving the people of Canterbury, but also delivering our goal of helping everyone live healthier, happier, and longer lives.

Mid-Canterbury Operations Manager Ian Rex adds -

The new Gen 4.1 ambulance will help save lives throughout the Selwyn district and will be a huge asset to the team, which is a mix of full-time and volunteer staff. The ambulance will also respond to emergencies in Arthur’s Pass and Christchurch Metro. The new ambulance will be based at Rolleston, a station that operates 24/7, and will replace an ambulance that has travelled over 300,000km in just over two years. This new ambulance will be well utilised in the district. Over the last twelve months, St John responded to 3,010 incidents in the Selwyn district - a 4% increase in incident numbers.

Christchurch Metro needs a new frontline ambulance which is part of the Canterbury district, while the new VW Crafter is suited to Christchurch’s more congested roads. Christchurch Metro runs a fleet of eighteen ambulances from an ambulance hub in the central city and responds to emergencies as far as west to Darfield, south to Rolleston, north to Culverden, and if necessary to the east to Akaroa.

This new vehicle will replace one of our higher mileage ambulances. In the 2021-22 financial year in Christchurch Metro, Hato Hone St John attended 40,701 incidents and of these transported 29,904 patients to a treatment centre. Of the emergency incidents, 39.7% were considered life threatening or time critical.

Rolleston Station also needs to replace one of its current vehicles that primarily services the Selwyn District. In just over two years, the current frontline emergency ambulance has managed to travel well over 300,000kms. Once this vehicle reaches the 400,000km mark, it must continue its service in another capacity outside of frontline emergency.

Hato Hone St John has existed in New Zealand since 1885 and we’re part of the community fabric of Aotearoa. We're known around the world for helping enrich the health and wellbeing of global communities and, although we operate and are funded entirely independently here in New Zealand, we’re proud to be a part of this important and long-established Order.