We live in a lucky country.
Although we are still living with its effects on our economy, we have been virtually untouched by Covid-19 when compared with the rest of the world in terms of our health and our freedom.
We are ranked seventh in the world on the prosperity index – Australia sits at 16, the UK at 13 and the US 18. We sit at the top of the table in the Asia-Pacific region.
The prosperity index measures things such as safety and security, personal freedom, wealth, living conditions, education, health, governance and the environment.
We know all this, we live it, and we see what's happening in other countries.
However, our track record with child poverty is dismal.
An OECD report has New Zealand sitting at 23rd in the world for child poverty – that's three spots behind the OECD average.
Figures released last week by Stats NZ reveal that in the 2019-2020 period, about one in seven Kiwi kids were living in households with less than 50 per cent of the median disposable income before deducting household costs.
Material hardship affects about one in nine children compared to about one in eight as of June 2018 - a reduction of about 20,000 children - great news, except for that fact that the latest numbers don't take last year's Covid-19 lockdown into consideration.
We reported last week that in Rotorua, there were at least 227 children in emergency housing and 157 in Tauranga/Western Bay of Plenty in the quarter ending in June.
By the end of the following quarter in September (the most up-to-date data) the number of children in Rotorua had risen to at least 246, and 169 in Tauranga and the Western Bay of Plenty.
One local advocate says children feel "unwanted" with mounting distrust, withdrawal and falling behind others their age.
This is appalling and heartbreaking. There is simply no need for children in New Zealand to live in motels.
A learning support co-ordinator spoken to by NZME says most of his day is spent triaging the child's emotional wellbeing "rather than actual teaching".
He says he can't even do a home visit to check on the children's welfare.
I don't wear rose tinted glasses. I'm aware that social inequality is not an easy fix, but it doesn't mean we shouldn't do the work.
Prime Minister and Minister for Child Poverty Reduction Jacinda Ardern said: "There is no silver bullet to fixing the long-term challenge that is child poverty, but ... we are making progress as we continue work to make New Zealand the best place in the world to be a child."
Ardern has her heart in the right place, but more needs to be done because right now, in 2021, in terms of child poverty, New Zealand is not the best place in the world to be a child.