Whānau ora: Jesibel and Edward's story


Published 8 June 2022


Before COVID, single mum Jesibel had a stable mahi and steady income that adequately provided for her and her two young boys. Last year, she resigned from her job so she can look after her four-year-old son who has health issues and is still too young to be vaccinated against COVID.

Jesibel said she is doing her best to focus on the positives, like when her eldest son Edward, who is on the spectrum, was able to go back to kura again and enjoy the company of his peers and teachers. She can see how school routines and activities have a positive impact on her son who thrives on structure and needs learning support. She also appreciates the emotional support from mum and dad and understands that they are unable to provide fulltime care for her boys because of their own health issues.  

Her family now fully relies on welfare support and Jesibel said their expenses outweigh the financial assistance she receives, especially on weeks when bills are due. Jesibel was a bookkeeper and uses her budgeting skills to make sure she’s not spending too much.

We asked Jesibel what immediate support we can provide. She said help with grocery costs would be a big help and that she would love to be able to buy meat as a treat for her growing boys. Through our partnership with Te Puni Kōkiri we were able to fund grocery vouchers for her whānau and support some of the costs to buy her son’s special dietary requirements and vitamins. We also talked about the nearest food banks available to her and checked that the disability support her son is getting still meets his needs.

20 years of experience supporting tāngata whaikaha and whānau means we have high levels of trust and satisfaction among the people we support. We believe working directly with individuals, whānau by whānau, person by person, is the key to supporting people’s wellbeing and resilience.