We are beyond grateful to the RRT for their generosity of spirit and big hearts.


As another year comes to an end, we reflect on people that have had the greatest impact on our lives. Those that have gone above and beyond, provided a helping hand, worked the extra hours or maybe as simple as offering kind words of encouragement.

We thank our teachers, our staff, and family and friends, and this year the Rapid Relief team from Dunedin were greatly honoured to thank over 2000 healthcare workers from Te Whatu Ora Dunedin Hospital with a free meal.

Friday 2nd December marked the calendar of over 64 RRT volunteers from both Dunedin and Oamaru.  Despite the odd drizzles of rain throughout the day, this was certainly no dampener on the enthusiasm of volunteers, arriving from 5.30am.

“We’re here today to thank the unsung heroes of this pandemic, the frontline healthcare workers, who have put the needs of others above their own and have worked day in, day out to keep our community safe.”

The selfless and incredible work this team of people provide to care for the community is truly amazing and is what compelled our team to step forward to say a heartfelt ‘thank you’. Each of our volunteers has either been or has somebody close to them that have been the recipients of the wonderful care provided by one of these amazing medical professionals.

“We know how hard Te Whatu Ora staff have worked throughout the pandemic, and this was our way of saying thank you,” says Rapid Relief Team Leader James Rawnsley.

From 6.30am through to 9am, over 640 staff passed through the tent collecting a delectable bacon buttie, a cup from fresh seasonal fruit and a bottle of water.

On the lunch menu was a gourmet BBQ beef burger loaded with a choice of salads and condiments, along with a dessert for the sweet tooths.  Lunch began around 1130am and finished around 2pm, after serving a total of 1,357 burgers.

Te Whatu Ora Interim Regional Director Hamish Brown says the event was a great success.  “The energy, the smiles and the gratitude really came through on the day,” says Hamish. “Our staff were able to take a few minutes to be greeted by a team of warm and friendly volunteers and walk away with some lovely kai to enjoy. We are beyond grateful to the RRT for their generosity of spirit and big hearts.”

As we reflect on the day, RRT feel so greatly privileged to have the opportunity to say our thanks to such a great number of medical professionals. As a volunteer myself it was a thrill to speak to several the staff and give-back in a small way, expressing our deepest appreciation and gratitude for their patience, care and support.

"I have just been the recipient of a free lunch from your organisation. Thank you so much as I came back from leave to this lovely surprise. I very much appreciate your kindness."

Frances Fleming | Community Oral Heath Southern

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