- Facebook page created for those needing assistance in self-isolation.
Whanganui locals have joined forces to create a Facebook group for those who need assistance as New Zealand gears towards a four-week lockdown.
From midnight tonight, New Zealand will in Covid-19 alert level 4, meaning all non-essential services will be closed and the country in lockdown for a minimum of four weeks.
Erina Cresswell made the group after a family member self-isolated at the weekend to stay protected, and wanted to know how many others were in self-isolation.
The Whanganui Self Isolation Help Page group already has more than 1000 members after being created on Sunday night.
The goal of the page is to create a safe place where those needing help can be put in touch with community groups who can support them. Cresswell said that can be with practical help such as shopping or running errands, or simply calling someone for company.
Cresswell said New Zealand is in for a rough four weeks, and staying together is crucial.
"The big problem for people in New Zealand over the next four weeks is going to be people's mental health. People are going to feel isolated, they are going to feel alone.
"Having somewhere that they can come and look for information, come and get support and have access to community groups. That's the really important thing, that we are all together."
The page isn't just for those who need physical help, but also for people who maybe just want some company.
"For a lot of people, it's somewhere they can come where they don't feel alone. The vibe there is very positive. The ability to come and be with others who are also scared and also doing this."
Cresswell said anyone who wants to help out or join the page is welcome to, and those who are part of other community groups could approach their leader to unite as one.
"Anybody in the community wishing to help out at all, please make contact because we will take as much help as possible."
Anybody wishing to run errands or do shopping for others is asked to provide a picture of their driver's licence so they have some accountability, Cresswell said.
"They can decide that today I can't cope with that, or things have changed for my family and I can no longer offer that service. And that is okay."
Cresswell asks those who join the page to answer the questions in detail so they know what groups can help the area they are in.
To join the group, sign up at www.facebook.com/groups/237985043905527