Allergy Awareness Week 2012 Final Report
The International Collaboration in Asthma, Allergy & Immunology (iCAALL) and the World Allergy Organisation released statements in March this year about asthma and allergies reaching epidemic proportions worldwide. They also commented that the diagnosis and continuity of care for those with allergies “remains cumbersome and treatment incomplete”1
Clinical and anecdotal evidence to date shows that NZ is following the worldwide trend with allergies, particularly to food, increasing in prevalence and complexity.
For Allergy Awareness Week (20-26 May 2012), Allergy New Zealand decided to focus on this increase in allergies and the surrounding issues accompanying the rise.
Again the stories of families living with allergies proved popular, with several Allergy NZ members gracing the front covers of regional newspapers. We would like to thank everyone who volunteered to share their family’s experiences. These stories really help raise important issues and awareness about allergies in your local communities.
Another highlight of our 2012 campaign was the ‘Campbell Live’ television coverage. Three separate reports on the allergy topic aired: The first focusing on Oscar Million, a little boy with serious food allergies; the second on food bans in a Wellington Kindergarten. The third piece, featuring Allergy NZ members Cherie Kaushal, Elizabeth Brown and their families, focused on the lack of auto-injector funding in New Zealand.
The Campbell Live coverage helped to raise awareness of issues surrounding those living with allergies and members across the country reported positive discussions taking place in their local shops, schools, after school classes, kindergartens and amongst friends and family.
Other highlights included:
Allergy NZ CEO Penny Jorgensen was interviewed for Newstalk ZB News and this prompted a very lengthy debate on food bans in schools on Leighton Smith’s morning show.
We would like to thank our honorary Ambassador Sir Peter Leitch AKA the Mad Butcher for donating his jar of ‘Black Gold’ for the Trade Me Marmite Auction which was extensively covered by Suburban Newspapers.
Word about Allergy Awareness Week spread to Auckland Radio Station ‘The Rock’ who created their own allergy song “Allergies, they make you wheeze, it could be cheese..”.
Overall, Allergy Awareness Week 2012 was a great success generating over $386,000 worth of advertising and over 1.1 million dollars in PR through coverage in a wide range of print, radio, television and online media.
1Johnson, K. 2012