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#Unite20 supports Frontline Charities

#unite20 ShutterstockUnited Way COVID-19 Community Needs 

Research, released this month by United Way New Zealand, shows Kiwi charities are under increasing pressure, managing a surge in demand with fewer resources. Donations are needed to provide the services and resources needed. #Unite20

Topline Findings from United Way Research (with 390 charities participants)

  • 98% of charities who participated in the research reported they have been affected by Covid-19 
  • Additional funding remains the primary way to help frontline charities. (78% of Charities e surveyed reported this need).
  • 49% of the charities surveyed need volunteer assistance.
  • 48% report seeing an increase in demand due to Covid-19 and foresee this will be the case for the next 12 months

Anecdotal themes emerging

  • Food banks and mental health charities in particular have experienced increased demand, as have those supporting youth and the elderly (One foodbank in Auckland reported going from 35-45 parcels per day usually to 794 in one day during April and Age Concern Whanganui received over 1200 phone calls in three days - mostly regarding online supermarket shopping).
  • Many charities fear that the full effects of Covid-19 are yet to hit, they are preparing for increased demand in levels 1 as centres re-open and services can resume.
  • Some are commenting that if additional funding isn't found they may have to reduce services.                
  • Many are concerned that traditional funding mechanisms such as stores, gaming proceeds and funding rounds have been removed or disrupted due to Covid-19
  • Many have had to adapt during lock down to supporting those in need via telephone calls as face-to-face support was not possible. Most reported staff and volunteers adapted well.
  • Many charities comment increased anxiety levels among the community.
  • Additional areas of inquiry included; counselling support, online shopping support, applying for benefits, wage subsidy inquires, employment and employment law queries and requests for food parcels.

If you can provide additional financial resources for frontline charities please click here


Mastercard Cares

Mastercard donation provides post-trauma support to those affected by the Christchurch Mosque shootings

While over a year has passed, the people impacted by the Christchurch Massacre continue to feel its affects. Thanks to a generous grant received this month from Mastercard, frontline charities supporting those affected have some extra help.

This week United Way NZ distributed $65,000 to Christchurch Resettlement Services, 180 Degrees Trust, Waitaki Multi-Cultural Council, 298 Youth Health Centre, Youthline Central South Island, Aoraki Migrant Centre, PIPS Pregnancy Infancy Parenting Support and Compassion Trust to continue the important work they do helping those affected by the tragedy to continue to heal. Thank you Mastercard for remembering those affected.

"It made my week to receive and distribute a grant of $65,000 from Mastercard to eight frontline charities to help them continue their critical work supporting those impacted by last year’s Christchurch Mosque Massacre. Thank you Mastercard for recognising that the process of supporting individuals and communities to heal continues long after the event itself"
Heather Rankin, United Way NZ Grants Manager

Support for South Auckland FOOD BANK urgently needed

Budgeting and Family Support Services, Mangere need our help, as their existing building has sold and they urgently need to relocate their community services and food bank. Without community and local business support, this essential service may very well have to cease operating.

Click here to donate (100% of your donation goes to the charity, less credit card fees)

Budgeting and Family Services is an essential frontline organisation and needs financial assistance to continue to provide the Food bank and services for families in South Auckland. Without funding, their Food Bank may not be able to provide the high volume of requests for food from people who are struggling and have lost work due to the COVID-19 outbreak. There has been a huge increase in demand for this Food Bank, due to a massive growth in food insecurity. 

Budgeting and Family Support Services require donations to meet the demand from the South Auckland communities. The Food Bank operates for those in genuine need of food from 9am to 2pm each day, Monday to Friday and has an office and communications available for food requests and family support services.

Budgeting & Family Support Services are based in Mangere, Otara & Tuakau providing support to families and individuals with a range of social services; as well as raising the issues affecting low-income families/whanau right across Aotearoa. For the past 23 years they have  provided a wide range of innovative and quality focused family services and now they need your help to continue to serve the community.

#Unite20 fund supports single parent/caregiver families

Birthright Wanganui are supporting families  led by one person, who are under stress due to the COVID-19 lockdown. Birthright Wanganui has been providing support to families in Whanganui for over 60 years and they need our help during COVID-19. 

Please click here to DONATE.

Isolation is very much a reality for sole parent/caregiver families, having limited support from other family members and friends. Staff keep in regular contact to support families, and are on call during the lockdown, adjusting their support to meet individual family needs. This support will continue over the coming days, weeks and months ahead.

Families have shared their feelings of what they are going through during the lockdown, including not being able to have any respite, as having to be available for their children 24/7. This can take a toll on mental health and well-being, as they are the only adult in the household. Basic needs such as food, heating, clothing and bedding have also increased during this time, making stress levels even higher.

The money raised will go towards ensuring that sole parents/cargivers and their children are supported and getting what they need. It will support the provision of our core services to continue during the COVID-19 pandemic and in the future.

Birthright supports families to be nurtured, inspired and resilient, and is the only organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand that specialises in working with families led by one person. This support is vital now more than ever before with the COVID-19 Global Pandemic. Sole parent families can be a mother, father, grandmother, other whanau member or adult. They are one of the most vulnerable groups in our society, and this is even more apparent during these unprecedented times.

All DONATIONS are tax deductable and 100% (less credit card fee) goes to Birthright Wanganui so they can provide family services during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Support English Language Partners to provide online services

Help English Language Partners provide online support for former refugees and migrants during the COVID-19 outbreak 

To DONATE Click Here 

With the COVID-19 lockdown and face-to-face tutoring in homes and classes no longer possible, English Language Partners were able to respond quickly.

English Language Partners’ community-based teachers and volunteers continue to build on their teaching skills so they can support former refugees and migrants and their communities.

Nationally, English Language Partners have had over 280 online language groups meeting and in the weeks since lock down learners from across New Zealand have attended over 28,000 hours of online classes.

Learning hasn’t stopped at English Language Partners – Many of these learners have very limited English and few contacts in the wider community to turn to in a time like this. For some learners this is their first opportunity to engage with technology in English. We are even hearing of people ‘bringing a friend’ to class which means we are reaching new people that would otherwise be isolated

Click here to DONATE and 100% of your donation goes to English Language partners (less credit card fees)


English Language Partners
Operating for over 40 years, English Language Partners is a national community-based charity that delivers English language lessons and enables effective settlement. Our vision is that former refugees and migrants participate successfully in all aspects of life in Aotearoa New Zealand.

We would like to thank The Tindall Foundation 
For providing financial relief to English Language Partners via the COVID-19 Quick Response Fund, managed by United Way NZ. This donation has provided an initial donation to English Language Partners in Canterbury, Otago and Southland.  

Support Youthline


Donate to help Youthline Otago and Southland to support our young people during the COVID-19 outbreak and beyond.  The presentations to the Helpline has changed recently. Coronavirus anxiety surfaced nearly 4 weeks ago. Presently, Youthline are getting rising presentations of Mental Health Distress due to the lockdown. For many, their place of isolation is neither safe nor happy. To be able to reach out and speak to a trained Helpline Counsellor is a life line to many young people at this time. The Youthline Helpline has no time limit cap and is prepared from a strengths-based approach to stay with a client to help craft solutions.


Youthline Otago & Southland provide a variety of services and programmes including helpline counselling, training, community education programmes, and face to face counselling. They are committed to offering accessible, non-judgemental services focused on the needs of young people to the wider Otago and Southland area including Waitaki, Oamaru, Palmerston, Wānaka, Queenstown, Invercargill and rural Southland. There mission is to support and empower our young people locally and nationally to develop the skills they need to grow and live healthy fulfilled lives.

To donate to Youthline Otago and Southland please click here


Support Youth Suicide prevention

Donate for youth mental health support and youth suicide prevention.  The current Covid–19 situation is having a dramatic and negative effect on the young people we support at Youth in Transition, some of whom are in desperate situations.

Youth in transition are supporting 180 vulnerable young people who can be experiencing a sense of alienation and loneliness and currently they are not able to come to the office which is often their “Safe Space” or have physical contact, face to face counselling or attend peer support groups has added hugely to their anxiety, putting them even more at risk.

Family situations are a crisis in their own way – Young people are now having to spend considerable lengths of time with their families. Since we entered level 4 lockdown, one young person has been subjected to violence, abuse and extreme levels of stress from a drunken and mentally unwell single mother and was unable to reach out to us for help.

Counselling is being provided over the phone or via Skype/Zoom to keep in touch with distressed young people. 

Financial implications – Several of our young people are unable to pay rent or have food. Landlords are threatening to evict these young people. It is proving really difficult to get assistance from WINZ as they are overloaded and are only offering a limited service, the foodbanks we usually go to are also completely overstretched.

Major funders are not accepting applications at present and Youth In Transition have also lost a valuable stream of income through the closure of our OP shop which was paying for a counsellor’s salary. If this continues they will have to lay off staff.

Youth In Transition. They are a charitable trust that is dedicated to helping young people find a life worth living. Offering high-quality affordable counseling to the community, this charity has already helped hundreds of young people aged 10-24 and their families.

Youth in Transition is a group of skilled, dedicated and passionate people committed to supporting any young person, their family and close friends, on that journey – for however long it may take.

Please donate here 

Support Shine

Help support ShineThe Covid-19 lockdown is necessary to keep you and all New Zealanders safe during this global pandemic. But for too many kiwis, home is where the danger lies. Those having to stay home with an abusive partner are feeling nervous, anxious and more isolated than ever right now.

The demand for Shine’s support from our front line staff in Auckland and through our national Helpline has already started to increase, while our access to resources and additional support have become difficult or have stopped.

Our two refuges have gone into lockdown, so we now need to provide emergency accommodation in motels for people escaping their violent homes. Many are leaving with literally the clothes on their backs.

As Shine can not accept donations of food and clothing due to the lockdown, we are looking for donations to ensure we are able to purchase clothing, food, medication, etc for clients entering our service.

Shine operates a national Helpline and two women’s refuges in Auckland, offering short-term accommodation for women and their children who are at risk of further harm from domestic abuse. Having two refuges means that Shine is now able to provide access to refuge at most times of day and night, including on weekends and maintain a national Helpline.

To Donate please click here

United Way NZ pleased to be supporting FOODBANK Canterbury

Foodbank Canterbury assists 150,000+ vulnerable Cantabrians every month. We estimate that almost one third of these are children - with many more experiencing food insecurity in the current uncertain times.

Foodbank Canterbury supports more than 126 agencies resourcing food for in excess of 4000 meals/day!  It is their goal to ensure the food goes to the right people at the right time. With a reputation for supporting where the need is greatest, Foodbank Canterbury a trusted part of the New Zealand not-for-profit community. 

Please click here to donate to FOODBANK Canterbury


This year United Way New Zealand has launched its Hearts@Work programme. This programme provides mentoring and specialist capacity building guidance for community charities.

Hearts@Work also extends to businesses wanting to engage with communities as part of their CSR wellness and team volunteering campaigns.

United Way Community Charities

United Way Business Services

Click here to download a copy of our 2019 Hearts@Work journal which highlights the work United Way NZ is doing across the country. (Please let us know if you would like a copy posted out to you.)


We are grateful to the charities we support, who put their hearts on the line for their local communities. The collective effort of volunteering, donating and giving back time and resources is vital to the Hearts@Work programme.

We thank you for your continued support.

Warm regards,

Teresa Moore

CEO - United Way New Zealand