Hutt News, Rōrahi 4, Putanga 11, 5 Hereturikōkā 1931, Page 11
In response to the Mayor's invitation thore was a large attendance in the -Council Chambers last week of both ladies and gentlemen interested in the relief of distress in the district. The Mayor, Mr W. T. Strand, presided and -cordially thanked all thoso -who had assisted in the many organisations for the relief of distress in the Borough. They had been called to meet a need that seldom arises in New Zealand, said his Worship, and the response was most jpatifying. The spirit shown by those who require assistance was really wonderful. A great amount of work had been carried out by the committees, but still auore assistance was needed. The committee had adopted a principle of making, wherever possible, a small charge for goods supplied, this was a good thing as it encouraged a spirit of independance, it has also, said Mr Strand, been a bar to those—'fortunately few in number —who trade on-charity. The committee had ttroken neW ground in its industrial work. There was a great need for fuel, also boys* and girls' footwear, and to meet- tho latter position injembers of the unemployed who were skilled in boot repairing would set up a depot for repairing* footwear at a low cost for needy casesl The tradesmen of the district had all given wonderful assistance. On the question of continuing the relief work Ifr Strand said it was estimated to cost £75 a week. "How far we can go is a matter that must receive very capful consideration, he continued. "Are we to curtail our work or are we to continue with it and meet the demand? For my part I don't think for one moment we should curtail the work o-f the organisation."
Tho meeting unanimously. agreed to continue the effort and several committees were strengthened to that end.
SEOQRETABY'S REPORT. A report was read by the secretary, Mr T. J. Jonea.
The report stated that tho system of making fixed small charges for goods supplied had a twofold object. It maintained the independence of the
recipients and also enabled the limited funds to go nruch further than they
•otherwise would. - further circum.^^fcance which was constantly borne in mind was that they should not interfere with the ordinary avenues of trade, and that they were -not doing so was shown by the very great assistance given by the shopkeepers and traders generally.
The following figures were given: Persons on the register, 740; orders issued apart from clothing, about 3500; •coal issued, 722cwt; meat issued at l*d alb, 76761b; potatoes issued at 281b for 6d 3 200ewt. The Social Welfare branch of the. Hospital Board provided assistance, principally in milk and groceries, to a varying number of people (about 175 at present). Levies have been advanced to 50 people;^ all has been repaid with, the exception of two or three. The amount of money taken by the office in small amounts of 6d and Is runs to £126 16s 6d. Orders for medicine and other special item* have been issued. SUPPLY OF, FOOD. iThe principal needs are.-food, clothing, and fuel. Beef and mutton are obtained from the works twice weekly, over one ton per week being used. The committee is much indebted to the local butchers for their generosity in offering to cut up, parcel, and hand over the meat to the recipient. Orders are given for 41b or 81b lots to suit the! circumstances, and up to date this has been dealt with by the Hutt Meat Company in a wonderfully satisfactory manner. Some firms have given the committee tickets for free , issues of meat, which are issued in special cases j where people have no money. The committee has also received nearly a ton 4K.-potatoes from various givers. These are kept separate, and distributed as free gifts where the,cireumstances of the case warrant.
Many sacks of vegetables of rarioTßl kinds have been donated. These are distributed from the depot along with the potatoes, and no charge has been made for them.
The Social Welfare-branch: of the Hospital Board is responsible for meeting the needs of those in real distress, aijjd so that there may be no overlapping, arrangements have been made to
work irf conjunction with it. A list of the social welfare rations as issued is given to tho committee weekly and entered on the card register. I CLOTHING AND FtJEL. j The drive for clothing held before the initiation of this committee provided clothes for a large number of families (about 300), and this, no doubt, has , reduced the on this side. Nevertheless, there are occasional calls for clothing which we arc not able to meet. Whero calls for underclothing and similar garments arc made an order on the eewing boo is given, and splenidid work is being done by the ladies concerned in this. This committee visits the families, finds out the requirements, and makes the necessary garments, the materials being provided by the executive. To date some 160 garments have been made for 30 or 40 families.
Men's-working boots are provided for by order on a firm,, a charge of 5a for light and 10s for heavy being made. A supply of men's working pants was obtained, and these arc distributed at low charges.
The need for children's boots had given the committee groat concern, and arrangements had now, been made to provide substantial -footwear at extremely reasonable rates, -and selling at pr6bably from Is to 4s per pair.
Up to date the f tie! position had been | reasonably met. This is duo in large measure to the generosity of one firm*, which, donated- some 19 tons of Waikato coal, and two others who each gave a ton of other coal, and monetary gifts by several donors, especially for
cfuel purposes. Up to date some 36 tons hav<3 been distributed in iewt lots. A low estimate of requirements is 15 to 20 tons of coal a^week.
WOMEN AND GIRLS. ;The registration of unemployed women, and girls has been undertaken by the" Lower Hutt branch of the Mothers' League. To date, 70 to 80 registrations have been effected. Positions are required for laundresses, charwomen, nurserymaids, domestic helps, milliners, ahop assistants, typists, etc. So far 13 of those registered have been found places, principally as domestic helps or as charwomen. Applicants are registered at St. James* Schoolroom. Any persons who can provide, work should
apply there to Mrs Nash or Mrs Andrews.
The Industrial Committee, as may be seen by the display in the windows of the relief depot, is working assiduously, and it is hoped to considerably augment the funds by sales of the articles, produced.
The Finance Committee's duties consist largely of arranging terms between landlords and tenants and between mortgagors and mortgagees. Many of those obtaining relief have taken up homes under the State Advances to
Workers Act. Tho committee has done good work in easing the position between parties where "workers are unable to meet their obligations. In reply to v question Mr A. N. Wallace reported that there were 707 children under 16' dependants of relief workera. The following ladies volunteered to join the visiting committee:- —Mes- T. H. Campbell, John and Harry Mitchell, D. A. Ewen, IST. McD. Weir and Miss Gray. '
The secretary reported that the committee had a balance of about £42 and that possibly another £150 was in sight..
jMr. IN"ash r in answer to Mr Wallace, eaid he could' not hold out any hope of further help from the Government. He believed that the committee had not yet reached the peak of its need. The committee should aim at raising from £1000' to £1500 in the next three months. < ■ ; •
Mr. Nisbet, on behalf of the provision committee, appealed for,gifts of green vegetables.
Mr. A. J. Gearing said that the collecting committee would guarantee to wise a week's funds by means of a shopping day if the people would rally round and provide goods for sale, principally cakes.
Mr A. N. Wallace reported that arrangements had been made for holding Sunday evening concerts.
l£r B. Ginger asked for more helpers on the fuel committee.
Mr Nash requested the unemployed to cultivate their' sections; the com-
mittee would provide seeds and advice.
Mr Andrews also emphasised the need of the unemployed cultivating their sections, and Mr Wallace suggested
the formation o fa subcommittee to visit homes and urge the need of
Mr A. J. Nicholls was transferred from the collecting committee as the convenor of a new committee whose business it will be to give instruction in gardening and growing of vegetables.