Paeonies with a purpose

Flower lovers rejoice. It’s paeony season and for the second year running these revered blooms – long known to symbolise compassion – are the floral heroes of a special fundraising campaign, ‘Peonies with a Purpose’.

Each bouquet or bunch of paeonies bought from participating retailers until November 14, will see $1 donated to the Mental Health Foundation (MHF). The funds will help MHF to look after the wellbeing of the 580,000 Kiwis who will need its help this year.

According to a recent Ipsos study commissioned by MHF, 25 percent of all New Zealanders currently have poor levels of mental and emotional wellbeing. Many have ‘battle fatigue’ brought on by 18 months of living with the challenges of Covid-19.

The pandemic has been one of the biggest challenges to collective mental health in several generations, according to MHF chief executive Shaun Robinson.

“Kiwis by and large have faced this challenge by looking after each other and getting through it together,” he says.

“Sometimes it’s hard to know how to help. That’s where Peonies with a Purpose comes in. As a charitable collaboration between Feel Good with Flowers and the NZ Paeony Society this campaign has at its heart, spreading joy and kindness, and as its purpose, supporting mental health.”

He says demand for MHF resources remains high as Covid continues to increase anxiety levels and challenge mental wellbeing for many.

“Generosity is vital for the MHF to keep pace with the growth in demand for its services, with fundraising allowing us to provide information, guidance and develop innovative programmes across the board.

“Lockdowns have reduced our ability to raise funds through events, and we’re extremely grateful for those in the community who continue to find ways to give,” he adds.

Thai-Anh Cooper from Feel Good with Flowers says spring is perfect for spreading that ‘feel good factor’ through Peonies with a Purpose.

“We chose paeonies for this campaign because New Zealand-grown paeonies are among the best in the world. Year after year, these gorgeous blooms generate phenomenal interest and pleasure for so many.

“This campaign allows us to collaborate with NZ Paeony Society in a positive and effective way and give back to those who really need support.”
For a list of participating retailers visit

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