Stars align for stroke patients

Stroke survivor Paul Harvey is becoming a household name when it comes to fundraising, with guests attending his successful events year after year.

I loved that we were raising money for such fantastic equipment, which will give brilliant outcomes to more stroke patients – Nerida Cortese

Paul recently held his most successful event to date – a long lunch at Longroom – fundraising for a new treatment suite at Auckland Hospital that will help change the game for stroke patients like him.

Paul has been committed to helping stroke patients following treatment at Auckland Hospital for his own stroke in 2018. Ever since, Paul has been raising money with support from the hospital’s charity, the Auckland Hospital Foundation.

This new treatment suite will save thousands of people from a life of disability, thanks to a ground-breaking procedure called Endovascular Clot Retrieval, giving patients the best chance of survival and recovery after a stroke.

Among Paul’s 60+ guests at Longroom was Dancing with the Stars icon Nerida Cortese. Nerida and her partner Steve are close friends of Paul’s and she loves supporting his fundraising efforts every year.

“Paul’s events are definitely ones I’ll go to again and again,” said Nerida.

“It was a fun afternoon. There was a really positive, friendly atmosphere in the room, and all the guests were so supportive of Paul’s cause. The online auction was a great addition to the silent auction, which had some great items.”

Among the auction items were dance lessons with Nerida, along with a ride in the Police Eagle Helicopter, a weekend for two at Pullman Rotorua with a Jaguar or Land Rover, and a framed signed All Blacks jersey.

Thanks to all Paul’s generous sponsors and guests, over $11,000 was raised on the day, which will all go directly towards equipment for the new stroke treatment suite.

Having now raised nearly $40,000, Paul has already made a big difference for stroke patients and staff at Auckland Hospital, funding a new whānau room, a baking therapy group and rehabilitation equipment in the hospital’s NZ-first integrated stroke treatment and rehabilitation centre (Ward 51 | Taiao Ora).

Nerida said, “Stroke awareness is key to helping people receive quicker and better treatment, so if we can help raise awareness and improve the likelihood of recovery through this new technology on offer, I’m all for it!”

With stroke being the third leading cause of death and disability in New Zealand, affecting 9,000 Kiwis every year, Nerida added, “I feel very fortunate that none of my relatives have had a stroke, but friends’ family members have, and I know how devastating strokes can be.

“I loved that, through the event, we were raising money for such fantastic equipment, which will give brilliant outcomes to more stroke patients.”

Paul is grateful to Nerida and everyone who continues to support his fundraising cause, and he remains passionate about making a difference for stroke patients. “It’s rewarding to know I’m helping people get the very best stroke care; I hope to inspire others to think about how they can give back, in their own way, and help ensure we all receive world-class hospital care.”

For information about changing the game for stroke patients, and how you can help, click here.


We extend our thanks to Paul’s generous sponsors: