WelCom July 2020:
Catholic social agencies have been helping women’s refuges, foodbanks, whānau in remote regions and many others with a $25,000 special Tindall Foundation grant aimed at relieving hardship caused by the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown.
Siobhan Dilly, Executive Officer of the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference, says Catholic agencies have been distributing the extra Tindall funds via organisations that work directly with families badly affected by the pandemic.
Five communities and organisations in the Hutt Valley, Wellington and Westport received a grant of $740 each, for uses as varied as mobile phone top-ups and help with food.
In the Auckland Diocese the Catholic Caring Foundation put $10,050 of the Tindall grant towards helping 600 whānau in isolated rural districts. Many of their elderly members were unable to make a very long journey during the lockdown to buy affordable food in a distant town.
‘A community group of 12 churches, six marae, a local school and local health officials were able to identify 600 residents in need of food assistance,’ Siobhan Dilly said. ‘They determined an action plan for getting food to the community when local food bank suppliers were unable to operate.’
Other recipients of the special grant included Dunedin St Vincent de Paul (foodbank top-ups, $800); Invercargill St Mary’s Parish (grocery vouchers for refugees, $800); Catholic Social Services Christchurch (phone and video family counselling during the lockdown, $3,500) and Common Good Foundation in Hamilton (support for women’s refuges, $3,425).
The special grant was on top of the substantial annual Tindall Foundation grants to Catholic social agencies through the NZCBC.