Women’s Cen­tre in ‘crit­i­cal’ sit­u­a­tion

Auckland City Harbour News - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - CA­TRIN OWEN

Last year an Auck­land women’s cen­tre was op­er­at­ing with $100,000 in Gov­ern­ment fund­ing. This year it will get none.

In June 2016 the Gov­ern­ment cut $30,000 in an­nual fund­ing to the Grey Lynn Auck­land Women’s Cen­tre.

The cen­tre, which sup­ports more than 4000 women and their fam­i­lies each year, re­lies on grants and dona­tions to stay afloat.

The cen­tre had re­ceived the fund­ing for the past 14 years but the gov­ern­ment told cen­tre man­ager Leonie Mor­ris it was re­al­lo­cat­ing the money to Whanau Ora be­cause the women’s cen­tre wasn’t meet­ing its out­comes.

Whanau Ora is a gov­ern­ment work pro­gramme jointly im­ple­mented by the Min­istry of Health, Maori sup­port ser­vice Te Puni Ko¯kiri and the Min­istry of So­cial De­vel­op­ment.

Last year the women’s cen­tre re­ceived a one-off $70,000 gov­ern­ment grant. The cen­tre ap­plied for a sec­ond round of fund­ing but that was de­clined deal­ing an­other ‘‘sig­nif­i­cant blow’’ to the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

With­out the grant the cen­tre has had to close its Par­ent­ing Project for sin­gle mums and their fam­i­lies.

Mor­ris said the re­cent cut had put the cen­tre in a crit­i­cal situ- ation.

‘‘The women will get less sup­port with­out our project. This is a tragedy.’’

‘‘Par­ent­ing is the hard­est job in the world and sin­gle mums are do­ing it on their own with few re­sources. The child poverty rate for chil­dren in sin­gle par­ent house­holds is 47 per cent,’’ Mor­ris said.

Min­istry for Vul­ner­a­ble Chil­dren, Oranga Ta­mariki gen­eral man­ager for part­ner­ships Peter Galvin said the Min­istry would con­sider fu­ture pro­pos­als from the Women’s Cen­tre.

He said the cen­tre had re­ceived the $70,000 grant for the Strate­gies for Kids/ In­for­ma­tion for Par­ents scheme (SKIP).

‘‘The max­i­mum grant pe­riod is only 12 months,’’ Galvin said.

‘‘SKIP grant re­cip­i­ents are aware fund­ing is for stand-alone com­mu­nity ac­tion projects only and can­not be used as a source of fund­ing for on-go­ing ser­vice pro- vi­sion.’’

Labour MP Jacinda Ardern said the fund­ing cut was re­mov­ing fund­ing from fam­i­lies that ‘‘le­git­i­mately’’ needed it.

‘‘There just needs to be a gov­ern­ment who in­vests in their com­mu­ni­ties rather than show up in cri­sis.

‘‘Why should we wait for harm to be done be­fore they’re in cri­sis?’’

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