May 11, 2020
Hauora betting on COVID change
The COVID-19 crisis has shown there are alternatives to funding community activities by gambling, according to Maori public health organisation Hapai te Hauora.
It welcomes a $25 million relief package from Sport NZ targeted at community and regional recreation and sporting bodies who are struggling to stay afloat in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hāpai chief executive Selah Hart says sport plays an important role for Māori in maintaining hauora, maintaining whakawhanaungatanga and building strong resilient communities.
She says the unprecedented changes represented by the country’s response to COVID-19 presents an opportunity to support community and grassroots sport and recreation to liberate themselves from gambling funding.
In the 2018-19 financial year, New Zealanders spent more than $2 billion on gambling, with 40 per cent of that coming from pokies in pubs and clubs, mostly in low socioeconomic areas.
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