Judy Davis makes up care packages at the marae for delivery to whanau in need. (photo Tessa O'Shea

A sobering sight in recent days has been the number of care parcels organised and distributed from Piritahi Marae.

Last Friday saw the first batch of 117 boxes go out, followed by 54 more on Tuesday and Wednesday – the result of a phone call between Judy Davis, the general manager of the marae-based primary health care clinic Piritahi Hau Ora and Donna Tamaariki.

It’s a sure sign that what was once a health crisis has now changed into an economic crisis for many of the most vulnerable families on Waiheke.

The packages included essentials such as women’s sanitary items, shampoo, conditioner and Milo for the kids – all high-priced items that could easily be left off a shopping list when budgets were stretched, or missed entirely if families were staying clear of shops because of illness, age or having children to look after at home.

Judy said when Donna called asking how she could help, Piritahi Hau Ora already knew of around 4500 people struggling with the early onset of the Covid-19 restrictions and could easily pinpoint 100 or so whānau who would be in need of a care package.

James Belfield and Shona Geary

Full story in this weeks Gulf News… Out Now!!!

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