FEP support banner image

$1 million available for disatser relief in Tairāwhiti

Friday 17 February

Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty has confirmed a $1 million injection into Tairāwhiti’s Mayoral Relief Fund.

Minister McAnulty joined Prime Minister Chris Hipkins and local MP Kiri Allan on a visit to the cyclone-striken region yesterday.

Mayor Rehette Stoltz is relieved the Government has released the funding.

“This additional funding is hugely appreciated,” she said. “It will assist us in supporting our community in the massive clean-up effort ahead while also helping our most vulnerable people.

“I want to sincerely thank Minister McAnulty once again for the support.”

Mayoral relief funds help communities bounce back after an emergency largely because local communities and councils are best placed to understand where the immediate needs are and how to help whānau, community organisations and marae.

Minister McAnulty says it’s too early to know the full cost of the damage.

“We want to make sure these regions have the resources to get immediate support to those who need it. I’m anticipating more requests for support as the need across affected regions becomes clearer. We’re meeting requests as they come through,” he said.

“I’ve been on the ground in Tairāwhiti with the Prime Minister and Minister Allan to get a gauge of the impact first hand, and plan to get to other affected communities in the next few days.

“My thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by Cyclone Gabrielle over recent days. What we saw today was gut-wrenching.”

Communities have a long recovery road ahead with the Government firmly committed to supporting them through it.

“I want to thank everyone who has moved quickly to respond to this event – the Council, Civil Defence Emergency Management Group, marae, volunteers, and first responders who have all stepped up to keep people safe,” said Minister McAnulty.

“The focus at the moment, for all those involved, is on continuing to respond to the emergency event. Central government continues to be available to support the local response teams as needed.”

The Mayoral Relief funds are in addition to other support that people may be eligible for through the Ministry of Social Development and the Ministry for Primary Industries.

Those who have been affected by an event related to Cyclone Gabrielle could be eligible for assistance funding. For further information and to apply for funding, head to  https://www.gdc.govt.nz/services/civil-defence/