News Release

Church Supports New Zealand Cyclone Relief

Humanitarian funds and supplies being sent to partner organisations to assist impacted communities

The Pacific Area Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced today that the Church is donating funds and supplies to Ngāti Kahungunu Incorporated, a Hawke’s Bay organisation working to help communities recover from Cyclone Gabrielle.

The donated funds will be used by the organisation to alleviate suffering and assist families and individuals as they rebuild their lives.

The Church is also donating bottled water, hygiene kits and women’s personal items to Ngāti Kahungunu Incorporated, for the organisation to distribute through its networks.

Another monetary donation will be made today to PolyActive, a grassroots community organisation based in Flaxmere, Hawke’s Bay, which is helping over 900 seasonal workers who were displaced by the cyclone. This donation will increase the organisation’s capacity to help these individuals, as well as others in need.

In additional projects, water, hygiene kits and women’s personal items will also be sent to Hastings and Wairoa, from the Church.

The total value of the donated funds and supplies to support cyclone recovery—as well as flood relief efforts in Auckland in late January— is $250,000 (NZD).

Church members and missionaries in Hawke’s Bay, Wairoa, Gisborne, East Coast, Northland, Auckland and other communities are helping to clean-up homes, yards and streets.


In a letter sent to Church leaders in New Zealand this week, the Pacific Area Presidency invited members of the Church to fast and pray for those impacted by the cyclone. A special countrywide fast will be held on 5 March.

Cyclone Gabrielle was an intense tropical cyclone which hit the North Island of New Zealand earlier this month. Regions hit hardest were the East Coast and Hawke’s Bay, as well as Northland and the Coromandel Peninsula.

It is predicted to be the costliest cyclone on record in New Zealand, estimated by the government to cost more than $13 billion dollars (NZD).

12 deaths have been recorded to date, more than 1,139 people are still unaccounted for. There have been numerous landslides and over 400 kilometres of serious roading and bridge damage. Hundreds of homes and business premises are uninhabitable.

Pacific Area President of the Church, Elder K. Brett Nattress, said, “Our hearts are with all those suffering at this time. Jesus taught us to help the poor and the distressed. These monetary donations and supplies will help us contribute to the overall work being done by government and other organisations. The donations are made possible by the generous giving of Latter-day Saints and others to the humanitarian fund of the Church.”

He added, “We are helping on the ground as Church members and missionaries, who live locally, are lending a hand in their communities. We will keep looking for other ways to help.”

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