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Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council

  • Going into the community to find those in need.     2 February 2021
    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council
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    The Vinnies Food-hub continues to receive requests from numerous families and individuals finding themselves in situations where they are not able to make ends meet.

    The team at the Vinnies Food-hub appreciate all the donations and the volunteer groups that have continued to roster on to process, pack and deliver to families.

    From March 2020- January 2021 Vinnies responded to 23,400 requests for food support. This number will hopefully level out as families settle into employment and also receive other forms of support.

    Aside for the large number of people who get assistance through referrals from agencies and those who contact Vinnies for assistance, there are many who are not able to access help.

    There is an increasing number of the invisible poor; those who are unable to reach out for help and continue to fall through the cracks. This a sad reality due to many factors such as mental health issues, break down in relationships, domestic violence, poverty and isolation to name a few.

    As a response to this issue, Vinnies have organised staff and volunteer teams to regularly visit housing sites, put on community meals and events to build relationship and also to connect with those who find it hard to reach out.

    Each fortnight Key worker Beau Takapu (pictured below) preparing packages for his fortnightly visit to a local residential flats for the elderly. Beau delivers up to thirty small food packages of essential supplies. eg: milk , fruit, meat etc. The food delivery is really a way to regularly connect and build relationships. Through these relationships the Vinnies staff are able to build trust, find out their needs and advocate for more support for these communities. There are several other Vinnies teams rostered to visit other caravan parks, boarding houses and transitional housing facilities throughout Auckland.

    These teams with the support of the volunteers can deliver food packages to up 200 homes in one day.

    The general feedback from the volunteers is that they enjoy this mahi and especially the people they visit. They have also reported back that this service needs to continue as they discover more and more people needing the support.

    The feedback from those receiving the support has been positive and hopeful, they look forward to the teams visits and the conversations that ensue.

    Vinnies will continue to fund this this work through 2021.

    A big Thank you to all our generous donors for enabling this mahi-aroha.

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  • Feed A Family this Christmas     14 November 2020
    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council

    As we draw nearer to Christmas, families are feeling the pinch of poverty. The Society of St Vincent de Paul (Vinnies) are receiving an increased request for food from families affected by job loss and decreased incomes due to the COVID19 lockdowns.

    The struggle is real as many of these family members recount their experience and the stress of how to celebrate Christmas with their families. There are numerous stories of how they simply do not have enough in the budget to purchase enough food or little gifts for their children.

    In repsonse Vinnies is working hard to procure food and funds to support these families over the Christmas Season. They are envisioning the demand for food to surge They have extended their food-hub into second warehouse to accommodate the volumes of food and resources needed to process thousands of food-boxes.

    The Society of St Vincent de Paul is grateful and thankful for the generosity of donors who enable this work.

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    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council
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    The Vinnies Auckland foodhub like many other foodhubs is still experiencing a high demand for its food support services.

    They are averaging around 400 and 500 per week on their busier weeks . This time lastyear it was between 40 to 50 food parcels per week.

    The Vinnies hub staff commented that this year they are seeing more of the families and individuals whose employment has been affected by the COVID19 Lockdowns.

    To date from the end of March (beginning of first lockdown) till mid October a total of 18,500 food referrals for food parcels have been processed.

    bynthe Vinnies hub staff and volunteers.

    The staff at Vinnies work hard at procuring enough food to make food parcels that uphold the dignity of those needing assistance. Each family food parcels is designed to feed a family of four for a week. More food is added on according to size of family. A family food parcel includes a dry goods box of canned food spaghetti etc spreads, cereals, rice, cookies, pasta, bread etc, a 2nd box of fresh fruit and veg, milk and 3rd box of frozen goods eg 2- 3kg meat, frozen desserts, pizza, ready to heat meals, soup.

    Other foodboxes are tailored to the needs of those who are unable to cook for themselves etc.

    Vinnies is grateful to the donors and volunteers who really make this assistance for families possible.

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  • COVID19 Level 3 Lockdown August 12 2020     13 August 2020
    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council
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    We have now entered into the Level 3 Lockdown and our Foodbank Operation at 12 Gundry Street Newton has vamped up again.

    Since the beginning of COVID19 in March till now, the Vinnies Foodbanks have distributed over 12,500 foodparcels. The demand continues to increase as families live into the realities of job losses and decreasing hours of paid employment. We are expecting a hike in the demand for foodparcels.

    Over the last few weeks we have extended our operation into another warehouse located 100 metres from our current location. This new leased warehouse premises now houses the processing of up to 500+ foodboxes each week. Over the past 2 months we have had large groups of volunteer groups from the local community roster on to assist with this process. As of lastweek the demand has surged to 650+ foodboxes per week and we are expecting this to rise with the Level 3 Lockdown

    The volunteer groups will now be replaced by our core team of Essential services family bubbles and staff who will process boxes daily to try meet the demand.

    The Foodbank is now officially closed off from the public but will continue to service families and individuals seeking food support via the Toll free 0800 680 090 number and also via email auckland

    There will be 2 pickup points and a delivery service by Vinnies Essential volunteers.

    The areas the Vinnies Foodbank will be servicing initially are as follows

    1. Auckland CBD

    2. Central Auckland

    3. South Auckland

    4. West Auckland

    The other areas of Auckland will serviced by our network food bank partners until further notice.

    We really appreciate all your generosity that enables this invaluable support to vulnerable families.

    Thank you for thinking of us and those we seek to support.

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    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council
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    It is the end of July now and Vinnies Auckland have responded to well over 12,000 referrals/requests for food-boxes. These are still unprecedented times. The demand for food peaked during the COVID19 Lockdown at around 1000 boxes per week and now they are currently processing an average of 500 referrals for food parcels per week.

    Each family food parcel contains = 1 box of dry goods, 1 box of fresh produce and bread and finally a box of frozen meat, dairy and vegetables. Each food parcel is valued at around $100.

    The largest demand of food parcels comes from those affected most by job losses, Pasifika and Maori families, solo parents, those who are mentally and physically unwell, those who are lower income earners, beneficiaries, and also the elderly.

    The Society is grateful for the assistance of the Civil Defense Emergency Management and the ongoing and faithful assistance from Kiwi Harvest and Citymission for the extra supplies of bulk produce that has saved alot of funds and ensure the nutritionally quality of the food being delivered to families.

    It is a miracle that Vinnies Auckland is still able to process 500 parcels each week. Enabling this miracle are the

    1. Generous donors on this Givealittle page and friends of Vinnies to support us each year.

    2. Wonderful volunteer youth groups and organisations that have rostered on every weekend to pack and process the parcels.

    3. The amazing Essential Service volunteers who still continue to deliver food parcels and also help out at the Centre.

    The Society will continue to be faithful in carrying out this work for as long as they are able.

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  • LEVEL 2 RESPONSE      2 June 2020
    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council
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    As we enter we enter into COVID19 Level 2 as a nation, the need for food assistance still remains high. Although the incoming referrals by phone and emails have leveled out, the demand for food assistance from partnering organisations and other providers of social services continues to increase.

    It is envisioned that this need will increase over the next part of the year will increase as job insecurity increases with the cutting back of paid hours and the loss of jobs. The St Vincent de Paul food-banks throughout Auckland continue to process up to 850+ family food-boxes per week.

    Currently the Civil Defence Emergency Management, are assisting with some of the funding towards the procurement of bulk food supplies to meet this need.

    The Society is also grateful to the Catholic Caring Foundation, Kiwiharvest, Auckland Citymission ,the Ministry of Primary Industries amongst all the individual generous donors who are assisting with the provision of funding and also the supply of bulk food.

    Volunteers and St Vincent de Paul staff continue to work hard to ensure that hundreds of these food boxes are packed and processed each week ready for distribution to those need the support.

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  • Foodbanks giving out food for a whole week in one day.     30 April 2020
    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council
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    As New Zealand enters into Level 3 of COVID-19 we are starting to see a stark increase of people seeking support from local food banks. the VINNIES Auckland food bank is now giving out a record amount of food packages compared to previous years. They used to give out 120 food packages in one week and now are giving out 200 per day. The need is great and it will continue to be for months to come.

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  • COVID-19 VINNIES Auckland RESPONSE     30 April 2020
    Posted by: Society of St Vincent de Paul East Auckland Area Council
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    We Are ALL in This Together

    As the lockdown continues amidst the global pandemic caused by covid-19, families are balancing the roles of helping to prevent disease transmission whilst also ensuring there is enough food to put on the table. A number of foodbanks run by various non-for profit collectives have closed across the country since the lockdown announcement. Foodbanks such as those operated by Auckland Society of St Vincent de Paul branches have been working overtime to keep families fed during the covid-19 pandemic. In response to this, a number of young adults have stepped up to offer any support they can. In anticipation of the growing need within the community, bulk chillers and freezers were connected and made ready for the incoming bulk food for the Vinnies foodbank. Between receiving stock, organising the foodbank and preparing logistics, these men and women would find time to fill in foodparcel requests for the Auck CBD, wider community areas as well as family lists from Social workers.

    The realities of the covid-19 have been realised none more so than in our communities. Amidst calls to ensure the health and safety of families across the country, food has become even more important as both comfort and source of nutrition during this time of grief and healing. The unfolding of the lockdown has since called into question how Aotearoa as a nation might be able to ward off a food crisis that is pandemic-related. In response to this, young adults have been operating Foodbank Satellites from their homes all over Auckland. The bulk stock is dropped off to their homes and they are given lists of deliveries in their local area. Within the last few weeks alone there has been a steep surge in requests coming in from families needing support. This has meant an increase of teams and added precautions around social distancing, hand washing, sanitizing and sterilizing. The team of staff and volunteers have been working around the clock to process orders and pack boxes to meet the demand.

    Health and wellbeing is influenced heavily by what and how we eat. The ability to consume food that is nutritional and accessible has become undermined by the intertwining of numerous realities. The reality for many families is that job security has been shaken, and in some cases rendered absent altogether. There are utility payments that still need to be paid. There are growing health care needs amongst those who live in homes with poor insulation. There are those who have isolated themselves in sickness with little to no access to support. While food is a significant need, many families have sorely missed the opportunities for face to face conversations or having someone there to hear their story.

    The Auckland Vinnies team recognise that now, more than ever, solidarity, compassion and prayers will be what builds resilience against food insecurity. It is well known amongst the staff and volunteers of SVdP that upholding dignity through meaningful relationships will be key to ensuring that families do not go without during their time of need.

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