Group that washes clothes, provides showers for homeless sees need double amid pandemic | 1 NEWS Leave a comment


A volunteer group working with homeless and at-risk communities has seen the need for assistance double since the Covid-19 pandemic began, but they’re rising up to meet that need.

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However, the group has risen up to meet the need and more than 160 volunteers now provide support across Auckland and Wellington.

Source: Breakfast


Orange Sky’s Auckland van, dubbed Hugo, contains two washing machines, two dryers and a hot shower.

It travels around the community offering free support.

But it’s about more than just washing clothes, Orange Sky operations manager Eddie Uini says.

“The washing sounds amazing, but the most important part has always been the connections that we’ve made,” he told Breakfast. 

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Orange Sky’s is offering free showers and washing services in Beachlands.
Source: Breakfast


“We refer to everyone that uses our services as ‘friends’ and I know for me, and I think I can speak for all our volunteers, is that it’s more than just the word. Like, we really get to know people.”

One of their friends is Clayton Joel Browning, who says the support gives people hope during the recent troubling times.

“You don’t know what to expect from Covid,” he says.

“You’ve got to make the best of what you’ve got and try and get through day to day, and live every day like it’s your last.”

More than 160 volunteers currently work with Orange Sky across Auckland and Wellington.

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Orange Sky New Zealand is set to be an offshoot of a first-in-the-world Australian organisation with 27 laundry and shower vans and 1200 volunteers.
Source: 1 NEWS


“Before lockdown, we’ve probably done about eight or nine shifts a week, but this van here is doing 16 shifts a week,” Uini says.

“We’re out every day, two or three times a day, and particularly out south and west we notice more of a need.

“When we go out to the community, [we see] mothers, fathers, people that might have a home as well, but just to be able to save them $10 on a wash is a really big deal for them.”



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