Mission's finances feeling the pinch

16:00, Dec 23 2013
Wellington City Mission’s Maria Millin
TUCK IN: Wellington City Mission’s Maria Millin shows off one of the Christmas hampers going to people in need.

Wellington City Mission is struggling to pay for its Christmas charity as it distributes toys and food for the region's less fortunate.

Mission staff and volunteers prepared more than 100 Christmas hampers yesterday. Many will be sent to needy families or to other social services, such as Women's Refuge and Wellington Refugee services today.

Mission operations manager Maria Millin said the hampers included chicken, ham donated by New Zealand Pork, drinks and other goods to cover a festive feast.

Hurricanes and Wellington Firebird players will help mission staff distribute the hampers.

In addition, the mission is also distributing 800 food parcels and 5000 toys to those in need, and other agencies, throughout the region.

Mission chief executive Michelle Branney said the packages relied heavily on donations and Wellingtonians continued to be generous.

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However, it was also becoming increasingly difficult to fund the charitable work, with Christmas 2013 the fifth in row that the mission had spent more than it got in donations This was because of larger demand for parcels and less income, she said.

"As an organisation we are feeling the pinch."

The support would help those "doing it hard" to have something to celebrate at Christmas, she said.

"Some of these people just need some extra help this Christmas."

The Dominion Post