Welfare assistance

Where to go for welfare services and support

  • If you are an existing Ministry of Social Development client or NZ resident needing financial support please ring Work and Income on 0800 559 009. Open 7am-6pm (Mon-Fri), 8am-1pm (Sat), Sun closed.
  • The Government Helpline is available to help people who are not sure who to talk to: please call 0800 779 997. Open 8am-5pm, 7 days a week.
  • If you need support to find short term temporary accommodation due to COVID-19 please call the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Temporary Accommodation Service on 0508 754 163 to register.

Family and friends, supermarket delivery 

If you need help with getting groceries, family and friends can support you by shopping for you or collecting and delivering your groceries using click and collect services. If you need supermarket priority assistance or need to arrange for delivery, you can contact grocery stores for more options. For example, the link to the Countdown website below outlines information for Priority Assistance. 

Visit the Countdown website for information about Priority Assistance (external website)

Essential Social Service providers

Some social sector organisations are already essential services. This includes organisations that are:

  • Providing or delivering food and other essential goods (eg. food banks, food rescue, food parcels)
  • Providing childcare services for essential workers (eg. ECE, OSCAR)
  • Whānau Ora COVID-19 Support Partners
  • Providing family and sexual violence crisis response support

You can find out more information by visiting the following websites:

Ministry of Social Development website (external website)

Pasifika futures website (external website)

Whānau Ora website (external website)

Te Pūtahitanga website (external website)

If you are unable to visit the websites above, you can contact your local CDEM (see contact phone numbers above).

Ministry of Social Development (MSD), Seniors, Studylink, Work and Income Services

Find out more information about support for emergency and ongoing needs from the Ministry of Social Development on their website and on the Work and Income government website.

Visit the Ministry of Social Development website (external website)

Visit the government work and income website (external website)

Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS)

Temporary accommodation to those required to self-isolate who are unable to do so in their own homes or are travellers visiting New Zealand and do not already have suitable self-isolation accommodation arranged.

The call centre is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The phone number is 0508 754 163.

Or you can visit their website: 

Visit the Temporary Accommodation Service website (external website)


Contact for free mental health and addiction support services. 

Free call or text anytime, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Or you can visit the website: 

Visit the 1737 website (external website)


Health advice and information about the condition or illness you are calling about, provided by trained healthcare professionals.

Free to call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Or you can visit the website:

Visit the healthline website (external website)

Government Helpline

Provides easy access to information across agencies, information regarding financial assistance and other support.

Call 0800 779 997 8am-10pm, 7 days a week.

Or you can visit the website:

Visit the government helpline contact webpage (external website)