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Council call centre helps Oxfam tsunami appeal

Council call centre helps Oxfam tsunami appeal

Wellington City Council’s Call Centre has joined the effort to raise funds for the recovery from the Asian tsunami disaster.

The Call Centre’s workload is traditionally lower than normal over the Christmas-New Year period – so its rostered staff are working with volunteers to handle thousands of calls from New Zealanders wanting to make donations to Oxfam New Zealand.

Call Centre Manager Graeme Jarvis says Oxfam’s freephone number – 0800 400 666 – has been electronically “patched” over to the City Council. It means staff and Oxfam volunteers are now using spare Council Call Centre phones and computer facilities to handle 50 percent of the calls to the Oxfam 0800 number.

The other half of the calls are still being handled by Oxfam’s Lower Hutt call centre.

Mr Jarvis says the Council Call Centre started handling donation calls yesterday (Friday) afternoon and has since received several thousand calls.

“It’s no problem for the Council – we have the spare capacity at this time of year – we’re just doing our bit in response to what is obviously a horrendous situation in Asia.”

Meanwhile Volunteer Wellington reports that its appeal on Thursday for volunteers to answer the Oxfam phones has been hugely successful. Hundreds of Wellingtonians responded – and there are now sufficient numbers of volunteers to provide capacity till at least mid-next week.

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