We can help you get ready to apply and find the right job for you. We can even help you while you're working.
Get ready to work
You can get training, help with CVs and cover letters, and advice for job interviews.
Find out what jobs are available, which job is best for you and how you can plan your career.
Whether you've just started a job or need some help at work, we've got your back.
Lost your job
We'll help you get ready to find a new job and support you while you're between jobs.
Start your own business
Get help to plan and set up a successful business or be a self-employed contractor.
Take a look at the range of benefits and payments we have available.
Redundancy, health condition or disability or another reason you can’t work
Food, school costs, power, accommodation or other living expenses you need help with
You’ve had a relationship break-up, family breakdown or violent relationship end
Health and Disability
Counselling, prescription and GP costs, medical alarms and other costs we can help with
Travelling overseas, how to apply, payment rates and dates, overseas pensions, income and other info for Seniors
Caring for someone else’s child or someone with a health condition, injury or disability
Urgent or unexpected costs
Dental, glasses, car repairs, fridge, washing machine, funeral or other urgent costs you need help with
Childcare, school uniforms, stationery, having a baby and other costs if you have children
Moving to New Zealand
Payments you can get from us, settling into NZ, overseas pensions and more.
Benefits and forms
A-Z list of benefits, forms, benefit rates
Check out what you need to do when you're getting a benefit or other payment from us.
Address, contact details, overseas travel, childcare, relationship or anything else that’s changed.
Declare income and income deduction tables
Change in your childcare situation, continue childcare payments, cohort entry schools and other childcare information
Going on holiday or going to live overseas
Re-apply for Jobseeker Support, Sole Parent Support, Temporary Additional Support and more
Check or stop your payments, payment cards and other information
Check your debt, repayments and other debt information
Rights and responsibilities
Our commitment to you, obligations, complaints, benefit fraud and more
Find out how we can help you with housing.
Nowhere to stay
Get help if you have nowhere to stay right now.
Find a house
Find out where to look for private housing, or apply for public (social) housing.
Living in your home
Get help with accommodation costs, and advice on any housing issues and public housing tenancies.
Find out how we can help if you’re moving house.
Read some of our housing information in other languages.
We may be able to help you pay for food if you’re on a low income or a benefit.
- You don't have to be on a benefit to qualify for this help.
- You don't have to pay the money back.
You could find yourself in a situation where you've had to pay for an essential cost that means you don’t have enough money to pay for food.
Maybe you’ve paid for:
- doctors visits
- dental treatment
- clothing for a job interview
- school clothes or materials for your child.
You may also find that you have less income this week because:
- you’ve been off work due to sickness but you’re not eligible for sick pay
- your hours are reduced unexpectedly.
Whatever your situation, we may be able to help if you:
- are 16 or over (if you're 16-19 and have a Youth Service provider, contact Youth Services)
- are a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident
- normally live in New Zealand and intend to stay here
- have an urgent and immediate need to buy food
- have no other way to pay for food (eg, no money in the bank and no assets).
It also depends on how much you and your partner earn.
Your income will be assessed either weekly or yearly, depending on the kind of help you qualify for. These income limits usually apply:
Current income limits
|If you are:
|Weekly income before tax is less than
|Single and 16 to 17 years old
|Single and 18 years old or over
|Couple (with or without children)
|Sole parent with 1 child
|Sole parent with 2 or more children
How much you get depends on your situation.
You can only use the money for food and essential grocery items, eg toiletries. You can’t get other things, eg, alcohol, cigarettes, gift cards, vouchers, etc.
If you are a current client, you may be able to apply using MyMSD.
If you are a new client or unable to use MyMSD, you’ll need to call us. We’ll talk with you to understand your situation and how we can help, and let you know if you need to do anything else.
If your application is approved, we’ll give you a payment card (if you don’t already have one) and load the money onto it. We’ll talk to you about how to get this to you.
You have 7 days to spend the money before it expires.
A payment card is like an Eftpos card and you can use it at any supermarket or store that accepts them.
You can also login to MyMSD to see how much you have left on your payment card and when it expires.
Once you've used your payment card, keep it. You can use it again if you need help from us in the future.