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Allergy Today: From Mark's Desk December 2021

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What a year! Even with all the disruptions, Allergy New Zealand has never had more on its plate or had more in the pipeline for the New Year than in 2022.

At the end of January we will be announcing the launch of three major projects, so please keep an eye on our website ( and our Facebook page.

Our Christmas issue is packed with some excellent articles and our NewsBites will keep you up-to-date with the latest developments affecting Kiwi families living with allergies both locally and globally.

Allergy NZ CEO Mark Dixon appears on 
TVNZ's Seven Sharp special to discuss allergic rhinitis
In this newsletter, we continue our series with long-term pollen expert, Professor David Fountain, who explains the Great Aotearoa Pine Pollen season; and we catch up with our research partner The Malaghan Institute, to discuss the results of their work on the links between skin and the onset of allergies.

Planning for next year’s Allergy Awareness Week is well underway and our Executive Committee has chosen a theme and fun resources to drive allergy awareness and education in our school campuses. Our annual promotion will run from Sunday 8 May to Saturday 14 May 2022. We are excited to share more news with you in the New Year. 

Volunteer Network
A special shout out to our volunteers around the country in this issue of Allergy Today. We are so grateful for the support and work they do in their local communities. We know from members and schools who contact us by Facebook, email and phone, that the advice and support you are providing is hugely appreciated. Thank you!

We are very interested in hearing from readers and members who may be interested in joining our volunteer team for 2022 and beyond. Do get in touch with us if you have an understanding of living with allergies - and the time and willingness to make it a little easier for others. We have a burst of new allergy resources coming on-stream in 2022 that we’d love to share with more communities and we are very reliant on our Volunteer Network to share them at a local level. If you are able, and interested, we would love to hear from you. Please email

We have had an unusually busy finish to our year here at Allergy NZ which bodes well for an exciting start to 2022.
We have enjoyed some excellent momentum from Penny Jorgensen’s advocacy work and more connection and policy collaboration with the Ministry for Primary Industries, Ministry of Social Development, Ministry of Health and Ministry of Education than ever before.
Combined with the publicity and promotion of the Pharmac funding gap that our FundaPen™ initiative achieved, we are aware of some exciting developments in support of the allergy sector that we expect to share in the first quarter of 2022.
The Board’s Strategic Review in August reinforced that we are well on track to achieve our five-year goals that they agreed for 2024. Once again, we have engaged with more community health service agencies and tertiary institutions to co-ordinate and host allergy workshops, when lockdown restrictions allowed, and our well-regarded allergy education packs went out to more than 160 schools. We thank the New Zealand Lotteries Grant Board and COGS for their support of these essential community-based programmes.Vaccination Clinic-693

With the support of our local medical centre and Asthma New Zealand, we were able to host COVID-19 vaccination clinics from our offices in Mt Eden. This joint community effort contributed to 575 Mt Eden Health Group becoming the first GP Practice in New Zealand to reach the 90% target.

I would like to acknowledge the ongoing continued support from our sponsors, advertisers and partners. It has been a challenging period for all private sector businesses, large and small, and we are so grateful that our sponsor family have continued to support our work.

Please remember to support them in return whenever the opportunity arises.

Our sincere thanks to all our volunteers, members, readers and supporters. We wish you all a safe, fun and healthy Christmas together.

Mark Dixon, CEO Allergy NZ

Allergy Today, December 2021

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