Joint statement from the Starship Foundation and Waikato Stud

The Starship Foundation, which is run independently of Te Whatu Ora and Starship Children’s Hospital, welcomes donations from gaming societies and the horse racing industry, and has long been the grateful beneficiary of donations of this nature. Donations are the life-blood of the Starship Foundation and every single dollar enables Starship Children’s Hospital to deliver world-class healthcare for children. 

Mark Chittick’s offer to be involved with, and become the potential beneficiary of the charity component of the Golden Eagle Race, came in at 3pm and required us to make a rapid decision by close of business the same day. As with any charity, due diligence is an essential part of our responsibility to accept donations. In this instance, considerations around the size and off-shore nature of the donation regrettably could not be resolved within this timeframe. 

We are tremendously disappointed that we could not meet the deadline and become the beneficiary of this incredibly generous donation. If we had had more time, the decision may very well have been different. 

We have spoken directly to Mark this afternoon and he too is disappointed at the outcome, but acknowledges there were time pressures involved. He would have loved to be involved in the Golden Eagle with the Starship Foundation as the beneficiary and he remains a huge supporter of the incredible work the Hospital does for children and families in need. Both the Starship Foundation and Waikato Stud have a huge amount of respect for each other’s work and industries and intend to work together to build a partnership in the future.