COVID-19: Help and support

Who to contact if you need support, and ways you can help yourself and others stay safe and well.

Contact tracing at Council sites

To support the COVID-19 contact tracing efforts consistently we are encouraging people to use the Government's COVID Tracer app or the Rippl app to record their movements around Wellington. 

Both apps will be used at all Council sites alongside membership (such as the Envibe system used at Council pools) and paper-based sign-in systems for people who don’t have smartphones, or prefer not to use apps. 

Download the free COVID Tracer app to your smartphone from the Apple iOS store, or Google Play app store.

Apple iOS

Google Play

Download the free Rippl app to your smartphone from the Apple iOS app store, or Google Play app store.

Apple iOSGoogle Play

Privacy impact assessment – digital contact tracing (128KB PDF) | Text version (680KB DOCX)

If you need urgent support

Phone our Contact Centre on 04 499 4444 or text 3400 – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They’ll either put you in touch with the relevant agencies or with our Emergency Welfare Team.

You can also find more information on the Wellington Regional Emergency Management Office website

If you are feeling unwell

If you are feeling unwell, stay home. If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19:

  • call Healthline on 0800 358 5453
  • contact your local GP for advice
  • see more information about how to access healthcare on the Government's COVID-19 website

If you need food

If you need help getting food for you and your whānau, there are support services in Wellington City ready to assist whatever your situation.

I need a free food parcel

If you’re struggling to afford food, get in touch with one of these organisations. Reaching out to your local Community Centre can also be a good way to find a food bank in your neighbourhood. 

I'm in need of a hot meal

Compassion Soup Kitchen provides hot meals to Wellington’s most vulnerable. Meals are distributed seven days a week. Check the Compassion Soup Kitchen website for an up-to-date schedule. 

Wellington City Mission has a ready-to-eat option as a part of their free food parcel delivery service. Call them on (04) 245 0900 or email


Financial donations are a great way to help others in need. You can donate online via bank transfer at:

If you need somewhere to stay

  • If you need emergency accommodation, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment can help. Register with them by calling 0508 754 163.
  • If you have nowhere to stay right now, you can call Work and Income on 0800 559 009 to apply for emergency housing. 
  • You can also get in touch with the Downtown Community Ministry (DCM). They work with vulnerable people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness to help them into sustainable housing.
  • If you are worried about a vulnerable person or need help yourself, our Emergency Welfare team may also be able to help – phone our Contact Centre on 04 499 4444 or text 3400 – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

If you need financial support

If you’re struggling to afford food, pay rent or other bills because you no longer have an income coming in, you can apply for the Government’s COVID-19 Wage Subsidy.

  • If you work for an employer, then you’ll need to get in touch with them directly.
  • If you’ve been self-employed, then you’ll need to fill out a form at Work and Income.

There you’ll be able to find out what government support you’re eligible for to get you through these next few months.

You may also be eligible to apply to the Mayoral Relief Fund, which is an emergency fund administered by Wellington City Mission on behalf of Wellington City Council.
Mayoral Relief Fund application form.

Services for over 65s

Age Concern Wellington provides help and support to people aged 65 and over and has police-vetted volunteers throughout the Greater Wellington region. 


If you’d like to help, you can donate money online via bank transfer at Age Concern New Zealand.

Translated information and resources

Support for foreign nationals

Help is available for eligible foreign nationals on visitor, student, or work visas who are experiencing serious financial hardship due to COVID-19. Visit: New Zealand Red Cross website

Accessible information for people with disabilities

Capital and Coast District Health Board is working to ensure that information is accessible to the disability community as they tackle COVID-19.

For more information: latest Disabled Community Pānui (accessible Word document, PDF, or sign language versions available).

Information for the deaf community can be found at Deaf Aotearoa’s website.

How you can help others

At Alert Level 1, work, school sports and domestic travel can resume as normal and there are no restrictions on numbers of people at gatherings.

For details: – Alert Level 1 information

If you want to volunteer your time you can go through an approved service such as Volunteer Wellington, City Mission, local food banks, Age Concern, religious support groups, or counselling services. Also check in with your local Community Centre as they may be able to connect you with local volunteering efforts to support your community.

Check in on relatives, vulnerable people, friends, whānau and neighbours, to make sure they have everything they need. You can do this over the phone or in person, making sure you continue to follow good hygiene practices at all times. You should avoid contact with others if you are feeling unwell.

Volunteer from home

  • Check in with Volunteer Wellington about how you might be able to help from home.
  • Connect elderly people with Age Concern Wellington, where you can become a telephone volunteer and you call and check-in with them at least two hours each week.
  • Help with research into the coronavirus by donating your computer or gaming system’s capacity with Folding@home
  • Help blind or visually impaired people with the BeMyEyes App.

Looking after your mental health and wellbeing

It has been a challenging time and it’s normal to feel stressed or lonely, even with the recent drop in alert level. Here are some things you can do to boost your mental wellbeing and that of your loved ones.

Keeping active

Getting outdoors is essential for our physical and mental wellbeing. At Alert Level 1, you can make the most of our open spaces and play spaces. Our recreation centres and community pools are also open for use.

Staying connected with others

Social connection is vital for our wellbeing. Staying connected is good for all of us and can help us with planning for practical needs and having support through the restrictions.

A good way to stay connected is to get involved in your local community by connecting with your community centre, or start/ join your neighbourhood group on Whatsapp or Facebook to support each other.

Find out what’s happening with Council services and facilities.

You can also tie into neighbourhood groups online and over the phone.