Day 20: Getting through together on Coromandel Peninsula
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Posted April 14, 2020
Council Matters ,
Media Release: Thames Coromandel District Council
They say it takes a village to raise a child - it also takes an Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) to look after a community during situations like the one we’re all currently going through together says Thames Coromandel District Council.
Over Easter the TCDC EOC team and volunteers helped pack and distribute more than 700 food parcels around the district.
“A big thank you to those helping out those in need during this time,” says our Mayor Sandra Goudie. “We know there are many people struggling financially, which puts extra pressure on families so looking after everyone’s welfare is a priority for the EOC.”
“Nationally there has been an increase of domestic abuse since the level 4 lockdown - so please reach out as there are so many agencies who are here to help.”
In the past two weeks the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) has been working with all social and support agencies, including Pak’n’Save Thames, to identify families or individuals who haven’t had access to food or water during the lockdown for whatever reason.
From there the EOC has been able to identify what each household needs and have been able to put together a delivery of water or food parcel that caters specifically to each family and members of their bubble.
With the Easter Bunny being classed as an essential, recent food parcels have also included some special Easter treats donated by a number of businesses.
“These parcels are not just about sustenance; we need to take into account the mental well-being of the family as well. And we all know chocolate and being able to partake in Easter treats is part of a healthy mind if not so much for the waistline,” says TCDC Civil Defence Controller Garry Towler. “I am very proud of our team who are all going that extra mile to support their communities.”
And it has certainly been a community effort. Unichem Life Pharmacy have been providing free hand sanitiser for all those involved with preparing the food parcels (council staff and EOC staff and their families, while packaging company VISY have donated thousands of boxes.
“There is an enormous amount of gratitude from the people who we are delivering to and I think the communities would be really proud of what we have been able to achieve,” he says.
Unfortunately, not everyone has been supportive. Recently two of the delivery drivers were met with abuse from a neighbour of a food parcel recipient. “This kind of behaviour is fortunately not common and is a reminder for us all to be kind and calm in this troubling time.”
Free phone 0800 800 405 for people in the Thames-Coromandel District struggling to get food, groceries, medication or other household goods and services is available between 7am and 7pm daily.
Photo: TCDC - Emergency Operations Centre food parcels