K'aute Pasifika has delivered more than 1000 care packages including food and other household essentials to families in the Waikato since lockdown.

Working with local food suppliers, community funders, corporate and public sector volunteers has meant vulnerable families have received much needed care packages.

K'aute Pasifika chief executive Leaupepe Rachel Karalus, said: "The reality for many families in our community is they need immediate help. The families we are supporting were already vulnerable and Covid-19 has intensified their vulnerability and added more pressure.

"Providing free care packages is one way we can help reduce the pressures our families are experiencing. We couldn't do this alone.

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"It is thanks to the tremendous collective effort from our funders, food suppliers and volunteers that we've been able to make this happen," she said.

We also acknowledge the contribution of Hamilton City Council, St John's Methodist Church and the Enderley Community Centre which provided us with the space where we could prepare the packages, while maintaining social distancing measures," said Rachel.

Help has gone to a broad cross-section of the community including elderly people, solo mothers living in motels, and people who have lost their jobs or had their hours reduced. Photo / Supplied
Help has gone to a broad cross-section of the community including elderly people, solo mothers living in motels, and people who have lost their jobs or had their hours reduced. Photo / Supplied

Working with local food suppliers has enabled K'aute Pasifika to meet the high demand with food available and ready to be delivered.

The general manager of Gilmours Te Rapa, Dayne Riddle, said "We need more like your team helping and putting themselves forward to help those in need. We will do whatever we can to help those in need during these troubling times."

Volunteers from organisations including UltraFast Fibre, Department of Corrections, Civtec and the NZ Police alongside staff from K'aute Pasifika have been working tirelessly, packing and delivering care packages to families in the region including Huntly and Ngaruawahia.

CEO of Hamilton-based Ultrafast Fibre, John Hanna, said: "Assisting our community at a time like this is not a decision for us, it is simply a reflex.

"We are proud to support the great work that K'aute Pasifika continually does for our communities – our recovery from events like this will always build up from the basics.

Rachel said: "We've received requests for help from a broad cross-section of the community including elderly people living on their own and unable to go to the supermarket, solo mothers living in motels, and people who have lost their jobs or had their hours reduced.

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"We have also been contacted by family members living outside of Hamilton to deliver food packages to their families.

"We exist to serve and are in an extremely privileged position to be able to do something practical for our community during this challenging time," said Rachel.

Funding for the food packages has been provided thanks to the generosity of Pasifika Futures Ltd, Trust Waikato and the Wel Energy Trust.

Covid19.govt.nz: The Government's official Covid-19 advisory website