Trust dishes out $267k for new ambulance for Queenstown

by Kim Bowden - Jul 08, 2024

Hato Hone St John has received more than a quarter of a million dollars to buy a new ambulance for Queenstown.

The money - approximately $267,400 - comes from the Central Lakes Trust in its latest funding round.

It was one of two significant grants decided on by trustees at their June meeting.

Queenstown-based social service provider and environmental organisation Mana Tahuna has also received a funding boost of $225,000 thanks to the trust.

Crux understands St John is looking to progressively upgrade its local fleet of vehicles and the grant will allow it to swap out one of its older ambulances for a newer model better suited to the sometimes challenging terrain of the region.

Based at the Queenstown depot are an ambulance that operates 24/7, an ambulance the operates 12 hours a day, seven days a week, and an on-call first-response unit that also operates 24/7.

David Baillie, St John Central Otago operations manager, says ambulances help the organisation to save lives.

“From responding to medical emergencies to transporting patients to hospital and looking after people at events, ambulances play in a vital role in keeping our communities and people safe."

He says St John is a charity that relies on donations and fundraising to purchase new ambulances and equipment, as well as to maintain and build ambulance stations.

“We’re always very grateful for any donation as it means we can continue to make life-changing difference with our communities.” 

Meanwhile Mana Tahuna will receive its money as an operational grant taking it through until March 2025.

Established at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Mana Tahuna is a kaupapa Māori organisation that supports local whānau whilst also restoring freshwater catchments in the Whakatipu Basin.

It benefited from the government’s Jobs for Nature funding programme, however that funding has now finished.

Last month Mana Tahuna also announced it is looking at the feasibility of developing a wild game meat supply business.

The money for St John and Mana Tahuna are slices out of more than $1 million that has been divvied up to charitable organisations by the Central Lakes Trust in its most recent round of grants.

Another recipient this time, Eduk8 Charitable Trust, which delivers The Right Track driver education programme, working with local drivers caught on the wrong side of the law.

In May, Crux published a story about the organisation's latest successes in Queenstown

It has received approximately $57,800 to help it expand its reach in Central Otago.

Main image (Facebook/Hato Hone St John)

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