Ngā Pōtiki has been distributing hundreds of Covid-19 care packages to whānau as daily case numbers continue to climb around Aotearoa and the likelihood of infection rises.
The iwi sought funding and partnered with a local pharmacy to create the packages, which include medical face masks, hand sanitiser, disinfectant wipes, pulse oximeters, thermometers, and other items to support the immune system.
So far, 450 packages have been given out to Ngā Pōtiki registered members.
The Government’s Unite Against Covid-19 website says as Omicron cases rise, people need to be prepared to self-isolate if they get Covid-19, or are a household contact.
Those preparations should include putting together a kit at home with items like hand sanitiser, face masks, and basic medical supplies such as a thermometer.
“We partnered with Life Pharmacy Bayfair to produce a Covid-19 care package that could add to the support shown by other community organisations enabling whānau to keep safe,” Ngā Pōtiki chairman Peter Stokes said.
He said the care packages provide Ngā Pōtiki people with some of the medical items necessary to help protect themselves and their wider whānau and community against Covid-19, and also provide support if someone in a household contracts the virus and needs to manage their infection at home.
“Ko te mea nui ki te poari o Ngā Pōtiki ā Tamapahore kia noho haumaru te whānau whānui o Ngā Pōtiki ki roto i te wā nei o te mate karauna. Our priority is the safety of our whānau during this pandemic, and how we can contribute and support them in their kāinga.”
Life Pharmacy Bayfair director Amy Kluit said it had been a pleasure partnering with Ngā Pōtiki, “we were very excited to provide a package of preventative and supportive items to assist the iwi members, and their whānau”.
“We are a locally owned and operated pharmacy whose goal is to improve the health of our community, so we jumped at this initiative,” Kluit said.
“We loved the forward thinking of the iwi to protect those who are most at risk, especially our vulnerable tamariki and kaumātua.”
Ngā Pōtiki whanaunga Linda Munn said her care package arrived just in time, with one of her moko catching Covid and needing to isolate at home.
“My family are so thankful for these kits,” she said.
Munn said it was reassuring to have their own supply of medical items at home, such as a pulse oximeter – a device that quickly and easily checks your oxygen levels and heart rate, which can be used to help monitor a range of conditions, including Covid-19 infection.
“It just made my daughter feel a bit more at ease.”
She said the care packages also meant whānau didn’t have to go out and buy things like masks, “it’s just another tool in teaching people how to look after themselves”.