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New SPARC Award To Salute Breath-taking Achievers

Media Release 22 September 2005
Asthma and Respiratory Foundation

New SPARC Award To Salute Breath-taking Achievers

SPARC (Sport and Recreation New Zealand) has recently confirmed its support of the Asthma and Respiratory Achievers’ Awards, which are held bi-annually by the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation. The Awards honour every day people who control their respiratory condition well enough to lead rewarding lives. Every nominee receives a certificate.

The Asthma and Respiratory Foundation will be closing nominations for the Achievers’ Awards on 30 September 2005. A new SPARC award will complement existing awards to celebrate an individual nominee who has become physically active in an attempt to control their asthma, COPD or other respiratory condition.

Diana O’Neill, Senior Advisor, Health, at SPARC, says SPARC is thrilled at the opportunity to be involved with the Awards.

“The Asthma and Respiratory Achievers’ Awards are a wonderful way to recognise people who manage their respiratory conditions in a positive way. For many people, increased physical activity is one of the most important steps towards managing an illness, and leading a fulfilling life.”

Jane Patterson, Executive Director of the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation talks about the moving response from the public who have jumped at the chance to help create local role models.

“So far we have received almost three times as many nominations as for previous awards. New Zealanders are increasingly affected by respiratory disease and want to celebrate their grandchildren, partners, work colleagues and friends – to acknowledge their brave struggles. Some of the stories are happy, some are terrifying…all are filled with hope for a brighter future.”

Supreme nominees, including the SPARC Award winner, will receive their certificates at a special ceremony hosted by The Governor-General, Dame Silvia Cartwright at Government House, Wellington on 22 November 2005.

If you know a positive person with a diagnosed respiratory condition and a management plan, please make a nomination. Call your local asthma society or jump online to download a nomination form from For more information, contact the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation by phone on 04-499-4592 or by email at


Background information

 One in four New Zealand children has asthma.

 Asthma is the most common cause of child hospital admissions.

 COPD is the 4th leading cause of death in New Zealand.

 It is estimated that respiratory conditions cost New Zealand around $1 billion per year in direct and indirect costs.

 Rates of asthma and COPD are expected to rise over the next two decades.

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