Osteoporosis awards delivered

Friday 22 October 2010, 6:16PM
By Pansy Wong

A woman who survived German Labour Camps as a child, was this evening awarded the ACC Medal for her inspirational lifestyle.

Lida McIvor from Mt Albert, Auckland was presented with her medal by Associate Minister for ACC Pansy Wong this evening when the Minister hosted Osteoporosis New Zealand's annual ‘You Deserve a Medal' ceremony in Parliament's Grand Hall.

Mrs Wong said she was delighted to present the ACC-sponsored award, to such a deserving recipient.

"Lida is an inspiration to us all. As her nomination states she is a survivor and an inspiration to those in her family and her community.

"After surviving, what must have been a terrible ordeal in Germany and coming to New Zealand as a WW11 refuge, she has gone on to help those around her and by living a healthy active lifestyle has encouraged others to follow suit.

"She has attended a gym for 31 years missing just the occasional day through illness or because the gym was closed. She also walks every day and is a passionate gardener. So good is her garden she provides organic produce to her local supermarket for free as well as giving it to neighbours and family."

Other awards were presented to Anne Mills, from Alexandra, Central Otago who received the Pharmac medal.

Anne grew up on a farm and trained as a nurse.  Although she did not take part in formal sports in her youth, she makes up for it now and after three hip replacements, she:

  • Co-ordinates the ‘Steady as You Go' programme throughout Central Otago
  • Is very active in her local community, a member of numerous groups, including a choir, Rotary, and several health related support groups
  • Takes five Tai Chi classes a week.


Dr Grace Suckling from Waikanae received the Network PR - Nutrition New Zealand Medal.

Grace started her early working life in Scotland and practised children's dentistry.  She was a dental researcher in Wellington, and later graduated as a Doctor of Dental Science at the age of 72 years, the first woman in New Zealand to do so.

Grace's fitness has a purpose, she is involved in the outdoors as a volunteer guide for the Nga Manu Reserve on the Kapiti Coast, where sound knowledge of wildlife and natural history, as well as good fitness are essential

She organises and inspires others to take trips to Kapiti Island or Bushy Park and is an active member of a number of local groups.

Mrs Wong says keeping active is important for the older population.

"Being fit and active builds bone health and muscle mass and helps prevent falls.  It makes you healthier, mentally sharper, and increases your quality of life."

Mrs Wong says ACC has several programs in place to help prevent falls a problem associated with older New Zealanders including providing Vitamin D to people in residential care and Modified Tai Chi classes.

 "ACC initiated the modified Tai Chi Programme under Injury Prevention as a falls programme in 1998 and has trained 710 instructors in Modified Tai Chi over the past five years to take the program out to the wider community."

"But there's no substitute for an active, healthy lifestyle, whatever your age," Mrs Wong says.

The Minister also praised Osteoporosis New Zealand for the tireless work it does to raise awareness and reduce the prevalence of the disease.