News | Arthritis New Zealand

By: Arthritis New Zealand  06-Dec-2011
Keywords: Arthritis, Chief Executive, Arthritis Educators

Wellington’s iconic Kirkcaldie & Stains has selected Arthritis New Zealand as it partnering for this year’s Charity Street Party, which will be held on November 26 from 11.00am until 4.30pm.

The Street Party will feature live music, entertainment, and activities for kids and families. The event concludes with the unveiling of Kirkcaldie’s Christmas window and arrival of Father Christmas.

Throughout the event, Arthritis New Zealand employees and volunteers will be on hand to collect donations to help the 530,000 New Zealanders who live with arthritis.

Arthritis New Zealand Chief Executive Sandra Kirby says the Street Party provides an excellent opportunity to usher in the holidays and generate awareness about arthritis.

“We are honoured to have the chance to partner with Kirkcaldie & Stains to help raise awareness and understanding about arthritis, which is New Zealand’s leading cause of disability.

“Many people think arthritis only affects older people, which is an unfortunate misconception. You might be surprised to learn there are over 1000 children and young people living with the pain of arthritis.”

“Arthritis New Zealand receives only 12 per cent of its funding from government agencies. We depend on fundraising for 75 per cent of our income; it is paramount to our success. Without the generous donations, we wouldn’t be able to continue providing our services.”

“Arthritis New Zealand helps people learn the best ways to manage their arthritis and to promote the awareness of arthritis across the country. We also advocate for improved services including for issues of medication subsidies and increased rheumatology services for people affected by arthritis,” said Sandra.

“We have a team of specialist Arthritis Educators who are experts at helping you learn more about your condition and the best ways to manage it. Through this free and confidential service, they will teach you about medication, exercise and diet, and provide advice and support.”

“While you are at the Kirk’s Street Party, and you see one of our amazing volunteers holding out a bucket, please give generously.”

You can also make a donation online or by calling 0900 333 20.

Wellington lawyer Alan Henwood has been elected President of Arthritis New Zealand.

Alan has had an active involvement with Arthritis New Zealand for a number of years. His roles have included Chair of the Research Committee, Governing Body member, and Vice President. In 2010 he received the society’s Premier Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution.

Arthritis New Zealand’s chief executive Sandra Kirby said, “This appointment acknowledges Alan’s long-standing association with the organisation, and the leadership and strategic skills he contributes to our Governing Body.”

Alan is a director of specialist Wellington law firm Stephens Lawyers. He has had a long association with the health sector. He has also represented a number of charitable and voluntary organisations, and has been the honorary solicitor for the Wellington Night Shelter Trust.

Arthritis New Zealand is the national organisation for people with arthritis. An incorporated society with charitable status, its Governing Body members represent the interests of the organisation’s members and volunteers and of the wider community, including its donors and supporters.

“Alan has made an outstanding contribution to Arthritis New Zealand. By electing him President, the members have ensured that the society will continue to benefit not only from Alan’s business skills and expertise, but also from his empathy for people with arthritis and his commitment to ensure the ongoing success of our organisation,” Sandra Kirby said.

Plumbquick, a leading Auckland and Wellington rapid response plumbing company, has teamed up with Arthritis New Zealand as our latestsponsor. Plumbquick, which celebrates its 14th birthday next month, has chosen Arthritis New Zealand based on the benefits the plumbing industry can bring to people with arthritis  and the trade’s long-term effects on its plumbers.

Grant Syminton, Plumbquick Director and owner, commented “Being a plumber is a rewarding job and as long as people rely on plumbing to get their water and to get rid of their waste, there will always be a need for a good plumber. However, due to the demands of the profession, many plumbers have to give up the plumbing trade at a relatively early age due to excessive pain and many are arthritis sufferers.”

In fact, more than half a million New Zealanders are currently living with arthritis… that’s one in every six people over the age of 15 years – or, one in every three people over the age of 45 years! With over 140 different types of arthritis, these can affect people of all ages – from babies and toddlers right through to those in their adult years.

Arthritis New Zealand Chief Executive Sandra Kirby says that for people living with arthritis, day-to-day tasks can become a test of endurance.

“When you have arthritis in your hands, something as simple as turning on the water tap can be tough.  We are pleased to announce our newest sponsors, Plumbquick, and we are looking forward to see how their expertise can benefit the 530,000 New Zealanders living with arthritis,” Sandra said.

Plumbquick will be sharing some practical advice and also tailoring some special products and services to suit different types of arthritis and limited mobility. The first of these offers is aimed at making life easier around the house for those with limited hand mobility by replacing existing tapware with extended levers.

Plumbquick are also offering a very competitive price on installing water filters for added health benefits.

For information on these products, please free call 0508 475864 (Auckland) or 0800 275864 (Wellington).

Jackie, who received a scholarship to attend the last Aspire course said of her experience:

“What an unbelievable and inspiring week it has been for me. The best thing I’ve done in my life…
It encourages you to overcome fears and discover untapped potential.”

Applications close on Friday 2 December 2011, for the next Aspire course: Monday 13  – Monday 20 February 2012.

Please contact Simone for an application pack:

Simone Harris, Enrolments Coordinator (Social Sector)

Phone: 0800 688 927

With a career that spans over 40 years in the dancing world, Arthritis New Zealand Ambassador Mary Jane O’Reilly knows how important it is to stay fit.

“I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 1998, and it took some time until I was ready to talk to people about it.  I’ve learnt that by taking part in gentle forms of exercise, like slow choreography, yoga and Pilates, I can still be active. It also tells me when it is time to rest, which is just as important as being active.”

Past Arthritis New Zealand awareness campaigns have used the slogan ’Move it or lose it’ and that message is as true now as it was then.  There are strong parallels in the theme of this year’s World Arthritis Day (October 12) ‘Move to Improve’.

Arthritis New Zealand Chief Executive Sandra Kirby says that although day to day tasks can present a challenge, staying physically active is vitally important for people with arthritis.

“When every day brings pain, stiffness and fatigue, the thought of increasing physical activity can be daunting.  However, research consistently shows that staying active can boost pain tolerance, lift people’s mood and improve quality of life for people with arthritis.”

“A good physical activity programme is possible for people of all abilities, sizes, ages and attitudes.  An effective self-management plan should include a plan to stay active, as well as medication, balance between rest and recreation, a healthy diet, and joint protection techniques.”

“Before starting a new physical activity, check with your doctor, specialist or physiotherapist, especially if you haven’t been active for some time. The best types of exercises can vary depending on the type of arthritis you have and the joints and muscles affected.”

One in six New Zealanders over the age of 15 is diagnosed with arthritis and there is no known cure.  There are currently 530,000 New Zealanders living with arthritis, including over 1000 children.

Arthritis New Zealand focuses on raising awareness and is the leading provider of information, education, services and advocacy for arthritis in New Zealand.

“We help people learn the best ways to manage their arthritis.  We also advocate for improved services and medication, and promote awareness,” said Sandra.

“Our team of Arthritis Educators are experts at helping people learn about their condition and the best ways to manage it. They offer a free, professional and confidential service that teaches about medication, exercise and diet, as well as providing specialist advice and emotional support.”

To contact one of Arthritis New Zealand’s Educators or to learn more, ring 0800 663 463.

Earlier this week Victoria University’s Dr Mattie Timmer and Dr Bridget Stocker were informed that they will both receive Marsden Fast-Start grants of $345,000 to conduct their research projects.

The researchers have more in common than a passion for scientific discovery; they’ve been partners since meeting in Switzerland in 2005.

The funding could bring some good news for New Zealanders with arthritis.  Dr Stocker’s research will focus on examining human cells that usually serve to protect the body, but have stopped functioning.

The results could have implications for people dealing with chronic inflammation, such as arthritis.

The information in this article was current at 02 Dec 2011

Keywords: Arthritis, Arthritis Educators, Chief Executive,

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