PMA funds ‘Covid-19 Packages of Support’ to be distributed to vulnerable Pasifika families

The Pasifika Medical Association through Pasifika Futures – the Whānau Ora commissioning agency¾has provided NZ$1.2 million in funding to Pasifika Futures to deliver ‘Covid-19 Packages of Support’. These packages of support will be distributed to vulnerable families in need during the current Covid-19 outbreak in New Zealand. Deliveries to families will commence this week.

Pasifika Futures CEO, Debbie Sorensen said these packages are vital as many Pacific families do not have the resources and money to keep themselves and loved one’s safe during the pandemic.

“These Covid-19 Packages of Support will help families particularly, if they are required to stay home for 14-days or if they have a family member who have lost their job as a result of the impact of Covid-19.

“We are working with the Government and Associate Health and Whānau Ora Hon. Minister Peeni Henare on additional funding to support Pacific families at this time,” said Sorensen.

“We are heartened by the resilience of Pacific families. As a community, we are familiar with doing a lot with a little. We understand at this time, our faith and our families will see us through.”

The Covid-19 Packages of Support will include household items and food supplies. These may include, but are not restricted to:

  • Food items (canned)
  • Rice
  • Flour
  • Sugar
  • Porridge
  • Powdered milk
  • Soup mix
  • Water
  • Soap
  • Paracetamol (adult and children)
  • Toilet paper
  • Rubbish bags
  • Children’s nappies e.g. nappies, baby wipes.

Pasifika Futures have engaged with their Whānau Ora providers (39) from Kaitāia to Invercargill, to ensure these packages of support are being received by families who are in need of them most throughout the country.

Pasifika Futures, Director of Partnership, Fiu Anae Wesley Tala’imanu said these packages could also include financial support such as helping families with power, rent and internet payments.

“Our partners will conduct a mini assessment with all families prior to them receiving a package of support, that way, they are able to assess how many people are in a household and what the priorities are for families. A package of support can then be assembled to directly support their needs.

“This is where providers relationships with Pacific families are crucial,” said Tala’imanu.

Partners will report back to Pasifika Futures on a weekly basis to capture the distribution of packages to families.

Pacific families are encouraged to contact a Whānau Ora provider if they are in need of a Covid-19 Package of Support.