The Catholic Agency for Justice, Peace and Development

Christchurch earthquakes

The generous contributions received from the New Zealand public supported many great programmes in Christchurch following the 2011 earthquake.

Hope Trust Counselling Earthquake Response (Hope Community Trust)

In 2016 Caritas supported HCT to increase the sustainability of their counselling programme, to enable them to continue to respond to the increasing demand for their services in the wider Rangiora community. Currently, the counsellors met with an average of 45 clients each week, to treat issues such as trauma, grief, anxiety and mental health.

Housing Opportunities for Parental Enhancement (HOPE) (Waipuna Trust)

This was a  transitional project aimed at providing young parents with housing, training, education, advocacy and support. This project takes key learnings from a previous three year project Caritas funded with SJOG  Waipuna called Better Housing Better Health (BHBH) that concluded in 2015.

Community and Neighbours (CAN)  (The Hope Centre)

Earthquake Support Coordination Services estimated there were more than 700 vulnerable older adults in Christchurch who are socially isolated due to a severe interruption to their routines following the Christchurch Earthquakes. The Community and Neighbours programme aimed to reduce social isolation in the lives of older adults and people with disabilities.

This was achieved through working holistically with the client for approximately 12 weeks to connect them to their community by introducing them to spaces and people. 

Youth housing programme

Waipuna youth agency’s ‘Better Housing Better Health’ programme aims to help 120 young people a year in severe housing need. 

Social worker for schools and communities

Specialist social worker Cinnermon Buckley is working with students, parents and teachers in Canterbury to identify needs, and put people in touch with relevant help.

Trauma social worker

Caritas has supported a specialist trauma social worker at Catholic Social Services to identify and seek additional help for people in critical social need.

Earthquake recovery coordinator

Matt O’Connell took up this role in November 2011. As parishes and local communities move deeper into recovery, Matt is helping parishes and Diocesan offices better identify their needs. This is enabling a more coordinated response. 

Menz Shed Coordinator

Caritas has supported extension of the ‘Menz Shed’ movement in Canterbury, including establishing a new one in Kaiapoi. Menz Sheds are places where men can gather to talk, share information and work on projects – in a safe, supportive and respectful environment.

Stormbirds - support for children and adolescents

Stormbirds emotional support programme helped more than 1000 children in Canterbury and many others throughout the country come to terms with living in the aftermath of a major earthquake. It helps children and adolescents understand and manage their feelings. 

Polypropylene clothing

Caritas partnered with the St Vincent de Paul Society and Christchurch clothing company WEFT to supply polypropylene clothing for people living in cold homes, unable to be repaired or provided with proper heating. About 3,000 units of tops and pants were distributed to people identified as 'at risk'.

Earthquake Liaison and Support Advisor

In the second half of 2011, school principal Karen Payne was appointed an Earthquake Liaison and Support Advisor to help principals and teachers in Catholic schools, in the early aftermath of the quake.

Express Miniloos

Emergency toilets were supplied through Rangiora Community Cares.


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Tutu ana te puehu - Stirring up the dust