The Wellington City Mission is asking for luxury items and presents for teenagers as Christmas draws closer.
Murray Edridge, Wellington City Missioner, told the Herald demand is high due to the Covid-19 pandemic and economic conditions.
He says housing costs in Wellington are pushing families "to the limit" with people struggling to meet costs, and often living in unsatisfactory homes.
It's forcing people to make incredibly tough decisions.
"How do you decide between feeding your children, paying the electricity or paying overdue bills?"
These are incredibly difficult choices that make life tough – and they only get tougher in the lead up to Christmas with the pressure on parents to provide for their children."
The Wellington City Mission operates a social supermarket where vulnerable people can "shop" for themselves – and Edridge says as Christmas approaches it would be great to have some more luxury items donated.
"One of the things about Christmas is most of us get the opportunity to have some treats and special things, so it's really important to have essentials but to have niceties around Christmas is really great."
Things like chocolate and confectionery are recommended.
The Mission is also operating a free toy store for families feeling the pinch this Christmas. The store opens 8 December and Edridge says they're always in need of gifts for teenagers and older children – often overlooked.
"We struggle to find appropriate gifts for teenagers so certainly smellies and things like vouchers are really appreciated because they fill a gap."
Anyone who wants to donate food, funding or gifts should visit the Wellington City Mission website.