#DearNewZealand Together, we can beat child poverty, one child at a time September 1, 2016 1:01 AM


About #DearNewZealand

Over the past few years, we’ve heard a lot about child poverty. With 305,000 Kiwi kids growing up in families that are struggling, it’s time to shift the conversation from, “do we really have a problem?” to, “yes, there’s a problem, now how can we work together to fix it?”

#DearNewZealand offers an insight into what poverty really looks like for children in our country, as told through real letters from real Kiwi kids. It gives every New Zealander a chance to join the conversation about how we could solve child poverty.

The aim of #DearNewZealand is to encourage Kiwis to talk about what’s happening to the kids in our communities who are going without, and offers actions that can be taken right now which will make a tangible difference for our most vulnerable children. Let’s stop. Let’s think. Let’s share. Let’s discuss. And let’s do something today to help a Kiwi kid in need. Together, we can beat child poverty, one child at a time.

What are the key messages of #DearNewZealand?

  • Child poverty in New Zealand has reached an unacceptable rate.
  • One in three children live in a household where the income is so low that families struggle to make ends meet.
  • Around 148,000 children live in ‘material deprivation’ and go without the things most of us take for granted – like a warm home, their own bed or a decent pair of shoes.
  • When children go without the basic things that they see other children having, they can feel stigmatised and left out. This impacts on their self-esteem, mental health and psychological wellbeing.
  • The focus of #DearNewZealand is not attributing blame for child poverty, but encouraging action to alleviate it.
  • Living a life of poverty is never the fault of the child. They have no power to change their circumstances. They are completely reliant on grownups for their food, shelter and care.
  • To have a significant impact, change must occur at a national level.
  • Variety is committed to improving the life quality of New Zealand’s most vulnerable children, but wider support is needed.
  • We encourage New Zealanders to help a Kiwi kid in desperate need right now for just $45 a month through Variety’s Kiwi Kid Sponsorship programme, and help provide them with the basic essentials they would otherwise go without.
  • All New Zealanders have a voice and can use it to create change for our kids, as individuals and wider communities.
  • We encourage the government to develop a plan to address child poverty, with measurable outcomes and appropriate investment.

To learn more about this campaign, click here.

About Variety – the Children’s Charity of New Zealand

Variety – the Children’s Charity is a champion for Kiwi kids; and with 1 in 3 New Zealand children growing up in deprivation our work is essential. Every year we help over 13,000 local children to have brighter futures.

Variety offers Kiwi kids and their families’ targeted, flexible support to meet their specific needs. We help by providing the basic necessities, much-needed medical equipment, life-changing mobility needs, and innovative educational initiatives.

Variety works alongside schools, community agencies and healthcare professionals, tackling child deprivation so that one by one, Kiwi kids who urgently need our life-changing assistance are set up to reach their full potential in life.

Variety is a registered charity with the New Zealand Charities Commission (CC24039), making donations tax refundable.