Aotearoa New Zealand is closely connected, so the chances are most of us know someone who has been affected by the cyclone and floods. The impact is immense at every level – personal, community, business, economic, infrastructure, political and more.
People and businesses need support right now to recover and rebuild. However, we also need to address what these weather events mean for the longer term, because they will happen again. And again.
SBN is a network of hundreds of businesses and people across Aotearoa New Zealand. We’re a community with shared values and we want to work together to respond.
Here’s what SBN is doing to help, what you can do too, and where you can find help.
How SBN is responding to the cyclone
Of immediate concern are the people and businesses directly impacted by the cyclone and floods. We have contacted our members in the areas affected to offer support and see how the network can help. The greatest need at present appears to be financial support. As a result, we have donated on behalf of the network to Stuff’s Givealittle cyclone campaign.
We are setting up a new Volunteer page on our website, where businesses in our network can share information about their need for volunteers. We will promote this through our communication channels to help match potential volunteers with business needs. If you’d like to list your need for volunteers, contact Ayla at email@example.com
We are calling for change. Our CEO Rachel Brown has written a hard-hitting opinion piece, ‘The climate does not respond to promises – it responds to action’, published in Stuff. She says: “If we don't want devastation, we have to vote for, and pay for, the risks to be addressed. We have to give politicians permission to take the difficult decisions. We have to make the investments our kids need to secure their futures now.”
Andy Kenworthy has also written an article calling for change, which we are promoting: ‘Long-term resilience starts now’. You can expect more thought leading articles and action on this front in the coming months.
How you can help
Each of us can influence the climate through the actions we take (or don’t take) every day, the way we vote, how we encourage others, and through influencing the businesses we work for. There are many things you can do that will make a difference. Here are some:
If you haven’t yet donated to a cyclone fund and have the means to do so, this is something you can do that will directly help. This is a handy list of places where you can donate.
If you’re in our network and need volunteers to help, let us know so we can share this via our website and communication channels. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’re in Auckland, sign the Green Party’s petition to save Auckland’s climate budget and stop it being cut.
If your business doesn’t yet have a climate action plan, get started now. The Climate Action Toolbox is free and makes it easy to get started. It also has a free emissions calculator so you can see how big your carbon footprint is and make a plan to reduce it.
Use low carbon suppliers in your business. That way you’re supporting them as well as reducing your own carbon footprint. There are hundreds of low carbon solutions listed in the Circular Economy Directory.
Find out how to regenerate nature, whether you’re a business, farmer, grower or land owner. Regenerating nature helps sequester carbon as well as providing habitat and food for native species, amongst a myriad of other benefits.
Find out what’s going on in your supply chain using our new tool, Docket. If you’re buying from companies with a large carbon footprint you could be indirectly contributing to climate change.
Where you can find help
If your business has been affected by the cyclone, the Ministry for Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE) has announced funds to access support. Grants of up to $40,000 are available. Find out more here.
Information for businesses affected by the extreme weather events, including looking after your employees, insurance claims and more is available on business.govt.nz.
Farmers and growers can apply for recovery support. Grants of up to $10,000 for pastoral and arable farmers and up to $2,000 per hectare to remove silt from trees and vines are available. Find out more from the Ministry of Primary Industries.
Financial support and assistance is available for individuals via Work and Income.
If you or your employees are feeling overwhelmed or anxious, there is free help available. Check out MBIE’s resources on mental health and wellbeing support.
Call Lifeline on 0800 543 354 or text 4357
Call Samaritans on 0800 726 666.
If you’re aware of other ways SBN can help, or other useful resources, let us know so we can add to this list. Contact email@example.com