Key Information - National
New Zealanders requiring support
If you need help with financial assistance please ring the Ministry of Social Development on 0800 559 009.
The helpline is available 7am-6pm, Monday to Friday, and 8am-1pm on Saturday.
You can also visit or call:
If you have need food, contact a local foodbank. A list of Otago foodbanks is available at www.foodbank.co.nz/otago.
If you have been temporarily displaced from your home due to COVID-19 and need support to find short term temporary accommodation, please call 0508 754 163.
Foreign nationals requiring support
From 1 July support for foreign nationals will be provided by the New Zealand Red Cross who are working with the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA).
The Visitor Care Manaaki Manuhiri project will provide temporary, in-kind assistance to eligible people to help meet basic needs such as food and accommodation.
People in New Zealand who are on temporary visas may be eligible for this support, if they meet the criteria detailed by the Department of Internal Affairs:
• The applicant must be on a temporary visa
• The applicant must be in New Zealand
• The applicant must be unable to meet their basic needs including food, rent, clothing or medical care
• The applicant must have exhausted all other options including accessing a flight to return to their home country.
For more information or to apply visit https://foreignnationals.services.govt.nz/ or freephone 0800 RED CROSS (733 276).