COVID-19 Response

This page was last updated 7 April 2020 - important modifications have been made to the Government's Wage Subsidy Scheme refer to information under resources below.

We know these are very uncertain times and we are aware of the challenges and increased pressure the impacts of Covid-19 will have on our community. So its now more than ever that we need to be supporting one another.

Please keep checking in with us as we post regular updates on this page. And remember you can call us for free on 0800 500 185 or email us on info@communitytrustsouth.nz

 

Keep up to date

Government is posting all the latest information on https://covid19.govt.nz/

Government also holds a press session daily, in conjunction with the Ministry of Health, which updates the status and alert level for COVID-19. 

Civil Defence Southland

Southlanders who urgently need assistance with access to essential household goods and services due to the Covid-19 lockdown can now contact Civil Defence Southland in the following ways:  Phone: 0800 890 127  Email: covid19@cdsouthland.nz

Community Trust South latest updates

COVID-19 UPDATE - Government Announces Support for NGOs and Community Groups - 27 March 2020

The Government has announced a $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

The package supports services that:

  • Ensure people have access to the food and other goods they need to survive
  • Provide a place for people to live
  • Support disabled people to maintain critical wellbeing
  • Keep families safe from harm and offer crisis support

Up to $16 million is to bolster existing essential social sector services delivered by NGOs so they can continue to support individuals, families, whānau and communities at risk through uncertain circumstances and respond to increased demand. 

Up to $6 million is funding for disability Community Participation providers to put in place appropriate health mitigations for the current group orientated services and provide support for disabled people in lock-down. 

Up to $4.8 million to provide community grants or fund innovative community-led solutions to support local resilience.

COVID-19 Our response update – 23 MARCH 2020

For the health and safety of our staff, trustees and community from today Monday 23 March 2020 our premises at 62 Don Street, Invercargill will be closed. All meetings and events involving staff, applicants, grantees and stakeholders are therefore cancelled (including upcoming district visits, funding forums and other community meetings hosted at our offices).

However, we are continuing to run business as usual carrying out all aspects of our work and supporting grant recipients, applicants, partners and our community as we all navigate these unprecedented times – it’s just we are now doing this from home and through a virtual means.

We are continuing to accept applications, make decisions, process accountability reports and make payments. 

Connecting with us

We are encouraging you to keep connecting and engaging with us and there are several ways you can continue to do this:

 

Recipients with approved funding 

Where a grant or scholarship has been approved and you can no longer run or attend events or complete work due to COVID-19, your funding will still be paid out for costs which cannot be avoided and where there are no options to recoup costs. We will be flexible with your accountability and other reporting deadlines and encourage you to talk with us as soon as possible if you need to revisit any aspect of your funding.   

Upcoming grant applications 

We are continuing to accept applications and to help inform our decision making we are asking some additional questions in our applications to understand the implications of COVID-19.   

Community Care

Together we will get through this, please take care of yourselves and each other, and remember you can call us on 0800 500 185 or email info@communitytrustsouth.nz 

COVID-19 update - 18 March 2020

We would like to reassure all recipients and community groups involved with our funding, either currently or for future applications, that we have plans in place to enable us to continue our operations uninterrupted in light of COVID-19. We are continuing to accept applications, make decisions, process accountability reports and make payments. We will however be changing how we operate to help keep everyone safe and healthy and will be providing ongoing updates on our website and Facebook page. 

Connecting with us

For now, we have cancelled all district visits, events and meetings hosted at our offices until further notice. However, if you need to meet with us we ask that you consider doing this by phone, email or ZOOM and you can call us on 0800 500 185 or email info@communitytrustsouth.nz to arrange.

While at this stage our office remains open, we are requesting that prior to visiting us you call 0800 500 185 in advance and confirm: 

  • You have not returned from overseas or had close contact with anyone who has travelled overseas within the last month even if you are not exhibiting any symptoms, or 
  • You have not had contact with a person with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, and that you don’t feel unwell, or have flu-like symptoms. 

If meeting with us in person, please also understand that we will use appropriate social distancing e.g. keeping an appropriate distance and not shaking hands. 

 

Recipients with approved funding 

Where a grant or scholarship has been approved and you can no longer run or attend events or complete work due to COVID-19, your funding will still be paid out for costs which cannot be avoided and where there are no options to recoup costs (your accountability will need to include evidence of costs incurred). We will be flexible with your accountability and other reporting deadlines and encourage you to talk with us as soon as possible if you need to revisit any aspect of your funding.   

Upcoming grant applications 

We are continuing to accept applications and to help inform our decision making we are asking some additional questions in our applications to understand the implications of COVID-19. 

We are committed to supporting and looking out for one another

We appreciate your understanding and we will continue to monitor the situation in our community to ensure we are able to respond appropriately. Take care of yourselves and each other and if you have any queries call 0800 500 185 or email info@communitytrustsouth.nz. 

Jackie Flutey 
General Manager, Community Trust South 

Resources

Important Updates to Wage subsidy & Leave Payment Scheme - Part of Government's Covid-19 Economic Response Package

In response to COVID-19 the Government announced a $12.1 billion Economic Response Package. Part of this includes two subsidies a Wage subsidy and Leave Payment available to all New Zealand employers, contractors, sole traders, self-employed people, registered charities and incorporated societies.

There have been important modifications to the Wage Subsidy scheme. You may be eligible to apply for these schemes - for more information visit and how to apply visit https://www.workandincome.govt.nz/products/a-z-benefits/covid-19-support.html#null

Government Support Package for NGOs and Community Groups providing essential services

The Government has announced a $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

The package supports services that:

  • Ensure people have access to the food and other goods they need to survive
  • Provide a place for people to live
  • Support disabled people to maintain critical wellbeing
  • Keep families safe from harm and offer crisis support

 

MSD Covid-19 Community Awareness & Preparedness Grant Fund

The $4.8m fund supports community efforts on the ground and recognises there are community groups and individuals doing critical work in the fight against COVID-19.

What is the Grant Fund for and who can apply?
  • Available to community based groups that are or will be providing essential community-led solutions to support local resilience and community wellbeing during the period of Covid-19 - Alert Level 4.
  • Grants will be one-off with priority being given to requests that support Maori, Pacific, older people, people with disabilities, people with current significant health considerations, migrant communities and people who are rurally isolated.
  • The fund has an initial cap of up to $5,000.00 (excluding GST) per request.
  • Available from 26 March 2020 and will remain available until the fund has been fully allocated

 

Government's Covid-19 New Zealand Website

Ministry of Health - Current situation

Keep up to date with the Ministry of Health's latest information on Covid-19.

Support for Maori communities

Government has committed $56 million to support Māori communities and businesses feeling the economic impacts of Covid-19:

  • $30 million for targeted health funding for Māori
  • $10 million is for whanau Māori community outreach 
  • $15 million will go towards Whānau Ora to reach into Māori communities, and 
  • $1 million to provide Māori businesses with advice and planning tools to tackle the economic impact of Covid-19.

The previously announced $12.1 billion economic support package will also help Māori in our communities.

List of essential services

Entities and their workers carrying out the services identified in the link are considered by Government as essential. This also includes entities in their supply chains (e.g. those providing IT and data infrastructure to an entity providing an essential service).

As this list will evolve over time keep up to date by regularly visiting https://covid19.govt.nz/government-actions/covid-19-alert-level/#essential-businesses

Creative New Zealand first phase COVID-19 response - $16m

Creative New Zealand's $16m Covid19 response is its first phase of funding to help buffer and support the arts community. Phase two will provide support beyond June 2020.

Phase One funding opens - 14 April through to 30 June 2020

Emergency Response Package components:

  • Resilience Grants - for eligible artists, arts practitioners, arts groups and arts organisations (non-investment clients) who are suffering, to help them recover, maintain and develop their practice in a completely changed environment. There are two opportunities: 
    • Arts Continuity Grant (up to $50k) - supporting the creation of new work or the reframing of an existing project in light of COVID-19, including creative and professional development, promotion and distribution (eg, supporting new ways of working).

    • Emergency Relief Grant (up to $10k per individual) - for eligible artists and arts practitioners, collectives and groups who may be experiencing devastating loss of income and opportunity and an uncertain future, and who have applied for the announced government support. More details to come – applications will need to include details of the impact of COVID-19 on their arts practice.    

Creative New Zealand is planning quick application turnarounds and rolling weekly decisions for both the Arts Continuity Grant and Emergency Relief Grant, but will monitor this commitment and the rapidly changing environment.

  • Short-term Relief for Investment Clients – open to existing Creative NZ investment clients and on top of existing funding, with priority given to those materially negatively impacted by COVID-19, to help them stabilise their businesses and remain viable. Investment clients are the 83 multi-year funded arts organisations in the Toi Tōtara Haemata and Toi Uru Kahikatea investment programmes, employing between them many artists and arts practitioners (including technical specialists), and who may have had to cancel or defer programmes and carry the impact of incurred costs without the anticipated revenue.

    Application assessment will take up to 20 working days, beginning as soon as the application is received. More details to come – applications will need to include a re-forecasted programme and budget.  

More information on the criteria and application process will be available soon - so visit https://www.creativenz.govt.nz/news-and-blog to keep up to date with the latest from Creative New Zealand.

Click here for Creative NZ resource of frequently asked questions

 

Charities Services - Information for registered charities

Charities Services have compiled some really useful information in response to concerns they have been hearing about and questions they have been asked e.g. what to do if you have to cancel or postpone your AGM or what to do if you need an extension to file your annual return. 

Please also ensure your primary contact details are up to date on the Charities Register.

To get guidance on these and other concerns visit http://www.charities.govt.nz/news-and-events/blog/information-on-covid-19-for-registered-charities/

They have also advised the following: 

  • Staff from Charities Services remain contactable - if you have questions email info@charities.govt.nz – but it may take a little longer for them to get back to you.
  • They won’t have access to any post that has been sent, so contact them via email - annual returns, cheques and responses to questions that have been posted to them will have to wait until they return to the office.
  • Registered charities have 6 months after the end of their financial year to submit annual returns and financial statements/performance reports. They won’t be sending their regular reminder emails about annual returns being due - so if you are unsure when your annual return is due, you can find this out by searching for your charity on the online charities register, and selecting the “Annual Returns” tab.
  • If your charity’s annual return is due shortly, but COVID-19 means you won’t be able to file your documents on time, you can ask for an extension. To do this, please email info@charities.govt.nz and let them know how much extra time you need. They won’t be taking action on any late returns during the lockdown period, but encourage you to get in touch with them if you can.
  • Your charity will not be able to hold its Annual General Meeting or other meetings if they bring people together physically due to people needing to remain home over teh next four weeks. They recommend looking at ways of doing this remotely if possible.

MSD - Supporting providers

Volunteering NZ Pandemic/Disasters Resources

Mental Health & Wellbeing

Understandably many people will be feeling increasing amounts of stress and anxiety as COVID-19 changes our daily lives. So its really important we look after our wellbeing and the wellbeing of others - as together we will get through this.

Mental Health Foundation

You can free call or text 1737 at any time to speak with a trained counsellor – it’s free and confidential.

Or visit http://www.mentalhealthorg.nz/get-help/covid-19/for top tips to get through.

Loss and Grief Centre

Are offering an Emotional Wellbeing phone service available to anyone - contact them on 027 443 8788 or email lossandgriefcentre@gmail.com

NZ Institute of Wellbeing & Resilience

Coping during coronavirus

 

Gore Counselling Centre

Are undertaking their counselling sessions by phone or Facetime - you can contact them on (03) 208 5366 or text 027-860-3056 or email office@gorecounsellingcentre.com

Local Community Organisation Contacts

Age Concern - 03 218 6351

Citizens Advice Bureau:

  • CAB 0800 367 222, email or live chat 
  • Invercargill - 03 218 6648 or 03 218 2217 email invercargill@cab.org.nz or to live chat just visit the website 
  • Queenstown - 03 442 6799 or email or to live chat just visit the website 

Multicultural Council - 03 214 9296

Parent to Parent - 03 214 3179

Stroke Foundation - 03 214 5439

Epilepsy NZ - 03 218 3089

ABLE - 03 218 2100

Head Injury Society - 027 424881

Time Out Carers - 03 214 9999

Youthline - 03 211 0031

Southland Help - contact@southlandhelp.nz or call centre 03 218 4357

Southland Community Law - 0800 55 0800 or email enq@comlawsth.co.nz

Board Pro - Free Offer for Organisations During Lockdown

BoardPro is offering their services for free to support the Goverance community during lockdown.

"BoardPro is now free of charge for *all* new subscriptions. This is our commitment to the global governance community through this difficult period."

Your subscription is free for six months, or until lockdown finishes, whichever is longer.

For more information visit https://www.boardprohub.com/covid-special-offer