COVID-19 payments to members
HBF is returning $42 million to members who held Hospital and/or Extras cover between 25 March 2020 and 30 June 2020.
A total of $574,348 has been distributed to West Australian charities which had hoped to benefit from this year’s HBF Run for a Reason.
When the event had to be cancelled, participants had already raised $74,348 and these funds were distributed by HBF to the nominated groups in March.
In addition, HBF is itself contributing half a million dollars to the nearly 170 health-related organisations which had counted on funds from the event. They range from Run for a Reason’s four
major charity partners (Cancer Council WA, Heart Foundation, Diabetes WA and Lifeline WA) to smaller charities such as Tuberous Sclerosis Australia and Tiny Sparks WA.
Of the half million dollars, $400,000 has been shared between all beneficiaries with each organisation receiving either:
An additional $100,000 special donation has been given to Lifeline to help it meet the demand for its services at a time when many West Australians are under huge mental stress.
HBF Chief Executive John Van Der Wielen said HBF had decided to contribute all funds originally allocated for staging this year’s HBF Run for a Reason and HBF Fitness to the community.
“Cancelling the State’s largest community fundraising event was not a decision we took lightly, given the number of charities that rely on HBF Run for a Reason to boost their income,” he said.
He hoped the donations would alleviate some of the pressure felt by these organisations due to the impact of COVID-19.
“Many of them will now have additional demands on their services just as they see community donations fall due to the current economic climate,” he said.
The special donation to Lifeline, one of the key beneficiaries of HBF Run for a Reason since the very first event, recognises its vital role during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“With the operations of countless businesses coming to a halt, thousands of West Australians losing their jobs, and day-to-day routines changing for nearly everyone, this donation will help Lifeline to
meet community need when fundraising is incredibly difficult,” Mr Van Der Wielen said.
Lifeline WA CEO Lorna McGregor said HBF’s support was an investment in the mental wellbeing of the community.
“Our community is currently afraid, anxious and increasingly alone. At Lifeline WA we know this because we have been inundated with calls to our telephone crisis support service from
West Australians fearful and distressed about the health, social and economic implications of COVID-19,” she said.
HBF’s donations linked to the HBF Run for a Reason are just one part of the organisation’s community support program for Western Australia.
In 2019/20, HBF will commit more than $2.5 million in financial donations and in-kind support to the WA community. Major initiatives include a three-year $300,000 partnership with Red Cross Lifeblood to
establish WA’s first public faecal microbiome transplant facility, free flu vaccinations for more than 100,000 West Australians, as well as contributions to multiple organisations including Foodbank, Royal
Flying Doctor Service and Cancer Council WA.
Media enquiries: Lauren Underhill/Jodi Eastman 0438 925 050 / CorporateAffairs@hbf.com.au
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