BOP MS society urging for support

Members of the Bay of Plenty Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society say they are on the brink of closure.

The Bay of Plenty Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society are at risk of closing due to financial losses.

Over the past 18 months, losses have left the society $20,000 in debt. Field officers have also been released.

Alternative arrangements have been made for those suffering with MS in the Bay of Plenty region, who will now access advice and support from MS Waikato.

Newly elected president of the Bay of Plenty MS society Sharon Hitchcock has experience working with Bay of Plenty charitable organisations, as well as having a strong track record of governance mentoring.

Sharon, along with current members have formed a new committee. They are urging members and the wider Bay of Plenty community to show their support for the struggling society.

“We are appealing for donations and voluntary support to get us over this hump.

“We are putting new systems in place for financial reporting and we are gathering more professional people around us to restore confidence in the Society.”

Each year it costs $30,000 to run the society.

“Unfortunately, while demand for our services has increased our income hasn’t risen to match this need.

“Our aim is to keep people with MS engaged in their community, working and contributing for as long as possible.  We help them gain the confidence to manage their lives well with MS.”

The BOP MS society has been operating since 2004 and is made up of 236 members. The society aims to provide essential support for patients’ social, emotional, physical and psychological wellbeing. 

Ways to support the society include:

  • Donating
  • Gift a targeted donation to pay a field worker for eight hours a week in the short term
  • Become a member ($40 a year) or $20 with community services card
  • Sign up as a committee member – an experienced treasurer is urgently needed
  • Volunteer to help with the annual national appeal in September. World MS Day is in May.
  • Attend the Bay of Plenty AGM in June

Donations and membership subscriptions can be made by internet banking: 03 0445 0236737-00 or by post to Bay of Plenty MS, PO Box 15 309, Tauranga, 3144.

If you know of anyone who may be able to help the Society through this crisis please put them in touch – phone 027 672 1917 or email

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