14 December 2016

A Little Day Of Giving

With gifts generously given, it was now time to deliver our haul of almost 500 presents to the children and families who need them most, at Ronald McDonald House


share

This year’s Little Ray of Giving has exceeded all expectations, thanks to the charity of two local kindergartens, a couple of loyal tradies, and the staff and families of Ray White Ponsonby.

It was a busy, early morning start for the staff at Ray White’s Ponsonby Road office, as they wrapped up the last of the nearly five hundred presents that had been donated over the past few weeks. Receptionist, Renae Te Maro, who had been the main go-to person for this year’s initiative, said they’d been overwhelmed with gifts over the past few days. “It’s just amazing how many presents we’ve got here,” she says. “It’s by far our best year, by a long way.”

Last minute packing

Last minute packing

With the car loaded up, the next stop was just down the road at Freemans Bay Kindergarten, where Karly Te Maro, Renae’s niece, who is one of the teachers at the centre, greeted us. The children were so excited to see us and show us all the presents that had been collected. I think some of them thought they were theirs! But I’m sure they’ll all have plenty come Christmas morning.

Freemans Bay Kindergarten

Freemans Bay Kindergarten

Next on the list was First Steps Grey Lynn Childcare, where centre manager, Chelsea Compton, gave us a huge basket of gifts for Ronald McDonald House. Ray White’s Simon Damerell was on hand to present the centre with a certificate of thanks, as he had done at the previous kindergarten. Simon’s wagon was now chocka with presents. Next stop, Auckland Hospital… and our final destination, Ronald McDonald House.

Chelsea from first steps kindergarten accepting a certificate of appreciation from Simon Damerell

Chelsea from first steps kindergarten accepting a certificate of appreciation from Simon Damerell

Ronald McDonald House provides a home-away-from-home and a safe haven for the families of the sick children who are up on the wards in Auckland Hospital. Though the average length of stay is seven days, many families will need to stay for weeks, or even months on end, according to Lena Pfitzner, the Corporate Partnership Officer at the charity.

“Auckland hospital is the main centre in New Zealand for cardiac and transplant treatments, so many of our long-stay children have had complex procedures. And once they’ve had their surgery, they will have to stay in isolation for up to 100 days, or even longer, to prevent infection. The longest a family has been with us is four years,” she adds

On a cheerier note, she says there’s a huge Christmas party planned for December 20th at the house. “Santa will be coming, we have face painting, and there’ll be a fairy flying around – and of course the children will get all those gifts you’ve just delivered to us. And then, on Christmas Day, the families who are with us over that period will be given more gifts.”

"We try to make it a great time for the whole family, where everyone gets a gift.”

“But the focus is not just on the sick child,” she says. “There will also be presents for their brothers and sisters. 

Lena says the children who are well enough will be able to come down off the ward to enjoy the Christmas festivities and open their presents with their families. Unfortunately, for the transplant patients the risk of infection is too great, so they’ll have to stay on the wards – however, they will be getting a very special delivery on the 25th!

Lena Pfitzner, Corporate Partnership Officer at Ronald McDonald House and Simon Damerell

Lena Pfitzner, Corporate Partnership Officer at Ronald McDonald House and Simon Damerell

It was certainly very sobering listening to Lena talk about the sick children and the sacrifices their families have to make. However, it was immensely rewarding knowing we had delivered nearly 500 presents that will help make their Christmas just a little bit more enjoyable.

This is the third year Ray White Ponsonby has actively supported this cause, and they will certainly be involved next year, according to Simon Damerell.

“Little Ray of Giving sits very comfortable with our values of being a responsible community corporate,” says Simon

“It can’t be about the bottom line all the time. There’s no point in just making money – you need to give back to the community, and not just a one-off, once a year. At Ray White Ponsonby, we have a number of events and causes that we actively get behind. The Little Ray of Giving is just one of many. “Let’s aim for a thousand gifts next year,” he smiles.

A Massive Thank You To...

Karly Te Maro at Freemans Bay Kindergarten, Chelsea Compton at First Steps Grey Lynn Childcare, Edward Stratton at Auckland Design & Build, Mark Ockleston at Sharper Cuts, all the people from our community that dropped presents into our office throughout the week and to all the staff and their families at Ray White Damerell Group Ponsonby and Grey Lynn.

share

Return to blog

More recent posts

15 October 2020

Better By Design


From integration to automation, we discuss the latest trends in kitchen appliances with four of Auckland’s top kitchen designers.

More
8 October 2020

Climb Every Maunga


The beautiful parks, reserves and open spaces in just about every suburb of Auckland are a vivid legacy of Auckland’s fiery and explosive past.

More
1 October 2020

Blank Canvas


Sitting on its own at the end of a row of ten units at the bottom of Shelley Beach Road in St Mary’s Bay is a very private and a quite extraordinary little home. Half art gallery, half inner…

More
1 October 2020

Blank Canvas


Sitting on its own at the end of a row of ten units at the bottom of Shelley Beach Road in St Mary’s Bay is a very private and a quite extraordinary little home. Half art gallery, half inner…

More
17 September 2020

Food for thought


When dining has a social purpose.

More
10 September 2020

Keep calm and carry on


What have we learned from the Covid-19 experience? Don’t always believe what you read – the experts don’t always get things right with their predictions.

More
3 September 2020

Working comfortably at home.


Until a few months ago, the concept of working from home was either a fantasy or an impossibility for most of us. Now, with some planning and forethought, it can be a reality.

More
20 August 2020

Under Pressure


The Hauraki Gulf – our playground and backdrop to our beautiful city is under an increasing environmental threat, according to the latest report from the Hauraki Gulf Forum

More
13 August 2020

What’s cooking?


If you’re looking for some interesting ingredients or even a brand new recipe for your next kitchen design, this may help.

More

Contact Us

Are you interested in knowing more about one of these articles? Please fill out the form below to get in contact with us.