One of Northland's most vulnerable groups - the homeless - will still be fed during the national lockdown, but finding somewhere for them to lock down is another matter.
Liz Cassidy Nelson, chief executive of Whangārei's 155 Community House, said feeding the homeless is classed as an essential service under the lockdown restrictions so groups that do so, including its own Open Arms Day Shelter, will stay open.
There was no guarantee they could provide any accommodation for the homeless community, but work was going on with government agencies to try to provide shelter for the region's many homeless.
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Cassidy Nelson said Open Arms would reduce its hours to 9am-12pm from 7am-1pm from today but would provide meals to homeless people only.
''It's hard as Open Arms was set up as a place for the homeless and those in the community who need help and support, but we can only open to feed the homeless and we'll do that.
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''We've spoken to the community about it and they have been great. They understand and we will be implementing strict health and safety and hygiene protocols and asking a series of questions of people before they come in. We'll also be observing the social distancing requirements and any other Ministry of Health guidelines,'' she said.
Police had been made aware that Open Arms would still be providing meals to ensure homeless people going to the centre were not stopped.
Cassidy Nelson said she was proud of the service's staff and volunteers who were giving up their own time away from their families to help out.
She said while the homeless would still be fed - as long as Open Arms' food stocks lasted - providing night-time shelter to lock down to was another matter.
''There's a housing shortage and there are not that many places out there. But we're hoping that with less or no visitors places like motels and hotels may be used, but we are talking with MSD about that and possibly other options for emergency housing.''
She said the public could help by being kind and understanding of the plight of the region's homeless.
Cassidy Nelson said with limited funding Open Arms may be put under pressure to provide meals for the homeless if its food stocks dwindled.
She was hoping to set up a suitable drop-off point for the public to donate food so it could continue feeding some of the region's most vulnerable and details would be released later.
''Food is so important for the community we help and I'm so grateful for all the help and support we get to do our work.''