Date: 05-Apr-2024

Helping Hands: A lasting legacy for Southland 'Legend'

In 2018 Southlander Blair Vining, along with his wife Melissa and their two daughters, captured the attention of New Zealand and beyond with their courageous publicising of Blair’s terminal cancer diagnosis and their struggle to secure adequate care for him.

Their fight to improve standards of cancer treatment for all New Zealanders began after Blair was given only 3 months to live and the family were told that an urgent appointment with an oncologist would take 8 weeks.

The Vinings set about using their story to affect positive change - first came a petition to the government that highlighted the need for improvement for post-diagnosis cancer victims like Blair. It became the largest petition of its type in New Zealand with over 150,000 signatures.

To people up and down the country, Blair Vining was an extraordinary man; turning his own tragedy into a battle to ensure better cancer care for all New Zealanders.


Long-lasting impact

Though Blair sadly lost his battle with the disease and passed away surrounded by family in October 2019, his work and dedication continued with one of his major goals yet to be completed.

He had long campaigned for the creation of a Southern Charity Hospital to deliver better care and support than had been available to him.

Following an immense community effort, the Southern Charity Hospital will soon be opening its doors to provide free colonoscopy and dental services to those in the southern half of New Zealand who are unable to access care through the public or private health systems.

The hospital would not have existed were it not for the courageous actions of the Vinings. Throughout the building process they communicated a public request for support. A huge response followed with countless businesses, tradespeople and medical experts offering their dedication, hard work, and generous support.


A Helping Hand

The key thing to note about the hospital is that setting it up is only part of the story. Delivering its vital services will require constant support, funding and equipment to assure business continuity.

This is where UPS Power Solutions’ Helping Hands Initiative was uniquely positioned to answer the call for such a worthwhile cause.

UPS Power Solutions donated two Eaton 9355 20KVA 3-Phase full online double-conversion UPSs, to protect the clinical (operating theatres) and IT (server room & communications) systems.
Our engineering team assisted with the UPS electrical design and theatre alarm panel configuration. Our Christchurch-based lead engineer, Nick Shirtcliffe, delivered the UPS on-site commissioning services.

This allowed the Charity Hospital to have operationally certified power systems for the operating theatres and patient recovery rooms, ensuring no mains-power disturbances would affect critical hospital procedures.

It’s with added satisfaction that the support we can offer in this instance is in the form of our expertise and world-class power products. UPS Power Solutions was only too happy to become a part of this amazing story and join the countless other businesses and trades that have made Blair and Melissa Vining’s vision a reality.

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