SunLive – Supporting Hospital Staff with Fresh Baked Goods

Are you a home baker? Rise up Tauranga is calling on the Bay of Plenty community to provide fresh homemade baked goods to show support for frontline staff at Tauranga and Whakatane hospitals over the next seven weeks.

“We need our amazing community to provide fresh homemade baked goods for hospital staff until Easter,” says Rosalie Liddle Crawford of Rise Up Tauranga.

“During this Omicron outbreak, staff at Tauranga and Whakatane Hospital Path Lab, Emergency Department and General Hospital staff will go out of their way to process thousands of Covid tests and provide care. many people entering the hospital,” says Rosalie. “The hours are expected to be even longer, more intense and stressful than they have already been in the past two years.

“Some fresh homemade baked goods from the community are a great way to show support.”

Cupcakes made by Paula Bilbe. Photo: supplied.

Upon graduating from college, Rosalie worked as a medical laboratory technologist at Tauranga Hospital before continuing her education at Wellington Hospital.

“So I know firsthand how intense the work can be. Delicious pastries made with love tend to lift people’s spirits and it will be nice to give all frontline staff a boost.

Bakers register via a Google Doc form.

“After signing up and choosing their day, we will provide bakers with details of each location and a map showing them where to go. There will be contactless delivery of fresh homemade baking on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 9am and 11 a.m. at a drop-off bay at both hospitals.

“Please don’t go to the main entrance of the hospital with your pastries,” Rosalie said.

Eleanor and Mason Ashby cooked a slice of weetbix during the first week of cooking for Tauranga Hospital. Photo: supplied.

The BOPDHB emergency planning team will distribute the pastry to staff.

Baking can include cookies, cakes, fruit bread, muffins, scones, pies, flans or slices, as well as gluten and dairy free options. Bakers are encouraged to share photos of themselves with their baking on the Rise Up Tauranga Facebook page.

New World Mount Maunganui offers cardboard cake boxes for purchase, allowing home bakers to place their pastries in a container that won’t need to be turned over.

“We are contacting other supermarkets to see if they can also offer their boxes for purchase,” says Rosalie.

Jo Taylor’s Chocolate Banana Cake. Photo: supplied.

A chocolate banana cake made by Jo Taylor includes a card.

“Thank you for giving me the opportunity to give it back to the amazing staff at Tauranga Hospital. I certainly cooked this one with lots of extra love. Just a little token of my appreciation for everyone hard work they do,” says Jo.

Amanda Little with two layers of her dairy-free chocolate slice for staff at Tauranga Hospital. Photo: supplied.

“Thank you for giving me the opportunity to thank the staff who cared for my father for two months in a nursing home last year, for my hip replacement two years ago and the many members broken ones my daughter had (we now wrap it in bubble wrap) Such great staff,” says Amanda Little, who prepared a dairy-free chocolate slice for Friday’s delivery.

I appreciate our medical staff so much,” says Ruth Sweatman who baked scones this week for Tauranga Hospital.

“It’s so nice after this very difficult week to do something positive and maybe useful. Congratulations to the team who organized this for our medicines at Tauranga hospital.”

During the first week of the bakery project, Vicky McGreal, realizing that many registered bakers lived near her in Arataki, created a Facebook group to help coordinate deliveries to the Tauranga hospital. Arataki Bakers now has over 20 members, including one member providing a contactless table for bakers to drop off their pastries before she delivers them all to the hospital.

Fresh homemade baked goods for Tauranga Hospital staff by Vicky McGreal, who started The Arataki Bakers group. Photo: supplied.

The community project has been endorsed by Bay of Plenty District Health Board CEO Pete Chandler.

“We are thrilled with this wonderful offer of community support for our teams and the show of appreciation at a time when all of our staff are going above and beyond,” said Pete. “A big thank you to Rosalie and the Rise Up Tauranga Bakery Network for putting in your time and effort. While we provide a range of things to keep our teams as supported as possible, a community effort is very special and is a wonderful kind message to our frontline staff – thank you all!

Fresh Home Baking for Hospital Staff is a project run by Rise Up Tauranga in conjunction with the BOPDHB Emergency Planning Team. Updates will be posted on

The home baking project for staff at Tauranga and Whakatane Hospital runs for seven weeks until Wednesday, April 13.

For more information, contact Rosalie on [email protected]

Ruth Sweatman with his freshly baked scones for the staff at Tauranga Hospital. Photo: supplied.