Plunket has been a big part of my life for more than 30 years.  Ever since I had my boys all those years ago, getting involved and becoming part of the Plunket family was important to me.

The more I did with Plunket, the more I came to realise what an important part of the community Plunket is. At the time when my boys were young, being part of a group that connected new mother’s in a small rural town was vital to me.  And I quickly came to realise that Plunket relied on us, my local community, to support it as much as we relied on it to support us.

Over the years as I’ve come up through various governance roles I’m often surprised how many people don’t know Plunket is a not for profit.  Or that many of the support services offered to parents and young families wouldn’t be available if it wasn’t for the hard fundraising efforts of local Plunket groups.

All the parenting support groups, education, car seat services, toy libraries and even the Plunket rooms wouldn’t be there if it wasn’t for the generous support of the local communities Plunket operates within.

So each year our national annual appeal is one of the most important events we run.  It is the key time when we come to you and ask for help to raise much needed funds to enable us to deliver all the support we do.

While our nurses, frontline staff and 24/7 support phone service PlunketLine are well known what is sometimes unknown is that we help support thousands of parents through all our other services.  We work alongside a number of key organisations – the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Social Development, SKIP, Water Safety New Zealand, Safekids to bring you the best health, development and parenting support we can.

But we cannot do all we do without your support.

By donating during our charity appeal – Plunket’s Bear Hug Appeal – you are helping the families with young children in your community.  We are proud to say that the funds raised in your community stay in your community to help families and young children locally.

It is important to us to keep that community connection, to build the local networks and bring the village together to help raise healthy happy young Kiwis.

For more than 100 years Plunket has been there supporting mothers and their babies.  We want to be there for another 100 years and more.  To do that we continually look at how we can remain relevant to each individual community.  Local Plunket groups know best what is important to their community and by supporting them you directly support the needs of your area.

Our Plunket Bear Hug Appeal is about passing on the hug – that show of love and appreciation.  This March we ask you to give Plunket a hug and donate to our appeal.

Together we can help grow great Kiwi kids and give them all the best start in life.

Give Plunket a hug at plunket.org.nz or any BNZ.

This post was sponsored by Plunket.

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Tristine lives on a lifestyle block in Oamaru after moving there from the family farm. She has two grown up sons, Morgan and Tyler. Tristine is passionate about locally based community initiatives, getting better health outcomes and making sure our families and communities are strong and connected. Tristine has been involved with Plunket for 30 years, holding many governance roles at local and national level. Tristine has been awarded life membership of her Area. She is currently the New Zealand President of Plunket

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