Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


What Aucklanders can do to help the homeless

Media release
January 2015

What Aucklanders can do to help the homeless

The arrest of Chinese national, Chen Ming Xin, has been followed by a public urging from Police not to give money to beggars in Auckland’s CBD – which poses the question, what do we do when we encounter homeless people begging on our streets?

Kiwis, for the most part, want to help – it’s in our nature – however, social development agency, Lifewise suggest that there are more practical ways to help than giving money. “What we need is action, as opposed to charity,” explains Lifewise General Manager, Moira Lawler. “Charity alone won’t solve the problems faced by those who have to resort to begging. Instead what is needed is a committed response and a rejection of social and economic exclusion.”

As Lifewise advocate, it’s not about turning a blind eye, as ignoring the problem won’t help. It’s about more practical measures that break the cycle and drive meaningful change.

Here are Lifewise’s suggested actions for people encountering beggars:

1. Become an advocate
It is possible to end homelessness. But to do this, communities, social agencies, local councils and government need to work together to address the many reasons people become homeless, and to support them to get back on their feet.

Become an advocate for the homeless – speak up about the plight of homeless people in New Zealand, and look for ways that you can make a difference. Lifewise would love to hear your ideas for ending homelessness. Join the conversation on our Lifewise Facebook page.

2. Show respect
There are many reasons why someone becomes homeless – unaffordable housing, losing a job, divorce, illness, addiction, and mental illness all play a significant role. Many of the people begging on the streets today were struck by a personal tragedy and lacked a support system to get help when they needed it.

Smile and say “good morning” when you pass people begging or strike up a conversation on a park bench – it could make someone’s day.

3. Tell people about Lifewise and other services
By telling people about the services available to them, you could turn someone’s life around.
At Lifewise, the focus is on helping people get off the streets for good, rather than just meeting their immediate needs.

Lifewise’s housing team help people get into permanent housing, and support them to address the issues that led to them becoming homeless. Auckland City Mission and the Salvation Army also offer services for the homeless.

4. Donate
One of the most effective ways to help the homeless is to donate to Lifewise. Your donations ensure that the team can provide the specialist support people need to get off the streets - for good.

5. Volunteer
Lifewise is always keen to have volunteers join their efforts. Volunteers can lend an extra pair of hands, and invest time into helping our trained team, or perhaps lend their professional skills to projects.

7. Eat at Merge café
Lifewise encourages Aucklanders from all walks of life to come together over a meal at Merge café at 453 K Road. Here, Auckland’s diverse and colourful community can enjoy affordable food together or order delicious catering for functions. Because Merge café is a social enterprise, every dollar earnt goes towards housing homeless people.

- ENDS -

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Ellen Rykers on The Dig: Community Conservation – The Solution To The Biodiversity Crisis?

There are backyard trapping networks doing their bit for Predator Free 2050, farmers planting native trees along their waterways, and iwi protecting whenua rāhui. There are 62 biodiversity sanctuaries across 56,000 hectares, with around two-thirds of them community-led. There are citizen scientists counting birds in their backyards and landowners conserving habitat in 3,500 Queen Elizabeth II National Trust covenants.

It’s increasingly clear that a government agency alone cannot combat the biodiversity crisis successfully. These grass-roots initiatives are a growing resource in the conservation toolbox. More>>

Closing This Weekend! Have Your Say On The Issues For NZ's New Biodiversity Strategy

Scoop and PEP invite you to help decide how we should protect and restore our biodiversity over the next 50 years using Scoop’s online engagement platform, HiveMind. HAVE YOUR SAY HERE>>

Biodiversity HiveMind Preliminary Progress Report
Open data report summarising preliminary findings of the Biodiversity HiveMind. Read Progress Report Here>>


PM In Japan: Jacinda Ardern’s Remarks Following Abe Summit

Today we discussed a wide range of topics. Broadly the themes were: a deeper, high-value trade and investment relationship, greater cooperation in the Pacific; and strengthening our security partnership. More>>


Replacing All But Chair: Twyford Appoints Five NZTA Board Members

Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced the appointment of five new members to the NZ Transport Agency Board... There remain two vacancies on the NZTA Board which will be filled in due course. More>>


Climate Change: Adaptation And Risk Assessment Framework Released

“We are already experiencing the effects of a changing climate such as coastal inundation and increasingly frequent and severe droughts, floods, fires and storms. This framework is an acknowledgement that we must start adapting”, James Shaw said today. More>>


Ihumātao: Mana Whenua Reach Decision On Land

Māori King Tūheitia says mana whenua have finally reached consensus over what to do with Ihumātao - they want it back. More>>


PM To Japan, New York: Ardern To Meet Trump During UN Trip

“I’m looking forward to discussing a wide range of international and regional issues with President Trump, including our cooperation in the Pacific and the trade relationship between our countries." More>>

PM's Post-Cab: "A Way Forward"

At Monday's post-cabinet press conference, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced a number of actions in response to the Labour Party's mishandling of sexual assault complaints. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Allegations Of Left Wing Media Bias

“Left wing bias” accusations date back at least to the mid 1990s... The charge of left wing bias was ridiculous then, and is ridiculous now. More>>

Next Wave Of Reforms: Gun Registration And Licensing Changes Announced

“The Bill includes a register to track firearms and new offences and penalties that can be applied extraterritorially for illegal manufacture, trafficking, and for falsifying, removing, or altering markings – which are a new requirement under the Firearms Protocol.” More>>





InfoPages News Channels