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Council Working To Support Porirua People In Need

More than 100 parcels containing essentials like food and medicine have been delivered to Porirua people needing urgent support, says Porirua Mayor Anita Baker.

“Since we went into Alert level 4, Porirua City Council staff have been working alongside our community organisations to ensure people most in need have access to food, clothing, and other items they need to keep healthy, safe and warm,” says Mayor Baker.

“When the need is urgent, we are able to respond immediately with support packages, and we help connect people needing longer-term assistance with the right support agencies.

“We’ve helped elderly residents and families with food and medicine, warm blankets, clothing and heating, and new parents caught out by the early arrival of a baby. We’ve also provided community organisations with personal protective equipment and helped visitors caught in Porirua during lockdown who needed accommodation or support to get home.”

Mayor Baker, Deputy Mayor Izzy Ford and Council Chief Executive Wendy Walker have donated 10 per cent of their salaries for three months to local welfare agencies to help support those most in need.

Councillors are privately donating to charities they support and doing voluntary hours helping out organisations they are involved with.

“Our Councillors are part time and a number have had their work hours reduced or have their own staff to pay, yet they continue to fully support our communities,” says Mayor Baker.

Anyone needing urgent support can call the Covid-19 Helpline on 0800 141 967 between 7am and 7pm, seven days a week. After hours you can request a call back.

“The helpline is for those in our community who have no support networks – who are isolated and need a helping hand to get through," Mayor Baker says.

“We know that some people find it hard to ask for help, so if you know of someone who is struggling please encourage them to reach out, or call on their behalf, and we’ll ensure they get the help they need."

Porirua Emergency Operations Controller Scott Martin says the 0800 helpline has been busy since it was launched, and it’s been heartening to be able to help so many in the community.

“We’ve got a team of Council staff working from our Emergency Operations Centre seven days a week responding to these calls and assessing how best to help residents in need.

“They are being supported by many other Council staff who are working from home to keep the city’s essential services running.”

Mr Martin encouraged Porirua residents to help share information about the 0800 welfare line with their networks.

“We’ve been promoting it through our social media networks, news media, radio stations and through our community and school networks – but we know there will still be people in our community who don’t yet know about the support available – so please share the helpline number 0800 141 967 with your networks.”

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