Save the Children New Zealand’s frequently asked questions about our work. 

If you still haven't found what you’re looking for, please feel free to contact us on 0800 167 168 or

Save the Children is the world’s largest independent organisation for children. We’re made up of 30 member organisations – including New Zealand – working with local partners in around 120 countries to save children’s lives, fight for their rights and help them fulfil their potential.

Our mission is to inspire breakthroughs in the way that the world treats children and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives. Our vision is a world in which every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation. Through our programming, emergency responses and advocacy, we put the most vulnerable children first.

Save the Children was founded in the UK in 1919 by Eglantyne (pronounced “Egg-lan-tine”) Jebb and her sister, Dorothy Buxton.

Eglantyne was spurred into action in response to the widespread hunger following World War I. At the height of the famine in Russia 1921, Save the Children was feeding 650,000 children a day. Eglantyne’s commitment to children’s welfare was enshrined in the Geneva Declaration of the Rights of the Child. This later culminated in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, which is a testament to Eglantyne’s legacy. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) is a legally-binding international agreement setting out the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of every child, regardless of their race, religion or abilities. The convention is the most universally accepted human rights convention, signed by 196 countries. Those who have ratified the convention are bound to it by international law. New Zealand ratified the convention in 1993. You can read more on our history page here.


We are non-religious and not aligned with any political sides. We don’t make judgements about the support we provide based on religious, political or ethnic affiliations.

We work in around 120 countries to reach the most deprived and marginalised children.

Our programmes are designed according to the needs of the community and the country we are working in. We work with children, their families, community leaders, partner organisations and local and national governments to ensure effective and sustainable change. We do whatever it takes to make sure we leave no child behind.

In 2019, Save the Children reached close to 40 million children in over 100 countries, directly through our programming, advocacy and campaigning. We responded to more than 130 emergencies in 64 of those countries, including Mozambique when Cyclone Idai destroyed homes, schools and hospitals. You can read some of our inspiring stories about how we’ve helped children on our story hub here.


While many children in New Zealand enjoy a happy and fulfilling childhood, there are still too many children are being left behind without a chance to realise their potential.

Save the Children’s advocacy programme advocates and campaigns to improve child wellbeing, realise children's rights and ensure children’s voices are heard. When issues arise that infringe upon children’s rights, we are ready to take a stand.

We promote change from the ground up by engaging children, their families and their communities. Together, we ensure children's rights are on the political agenda. We hold leaders to account for the commitments they have made, ensuring systems are in place to protect and provide for all children.

Our recent Five to Thrive campaign, where we worked alongside three other children’s organisations, helped put children’s issues at the heart of the 2020 General Election.

Save the Children New Zealand is a member of Save the Children international. We were first set up in 1947, set up by Minnie Havelaar in North Canterbury to organise care for war-orphaned children in the wake of World War II.

We have a small-knit team in primarily based in Wellington who are responsible for developing and monitoring our domestic and international programmes, as well as looking after our supporters and sharing information about the progress we’re making. Our finance team oversee our budget and make sure we’re accounting for every dollar we receive from our supporters.

The programmes we manage are primarily within New Zealand and the Asia-Pacific region, all with the aim to improve the lives of children by supporting greater access to social services, providing a quality education, helping build resilience and prepare for disaster, as well as increasing family livelihoods and incomes.

We’re also active in responding to emergencies. Over the last year (2020) we provided humanitarian assistance to help communities in Vanuatu, Lebanon, and Bangladesh (Rohingya refugee crisis). With also respond to emergencies through Save the Children International, including a global appeal to support children during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Save the Children New Zealand receives money from a variety of sources. Monthly/regular giving from Kiwis around the country is one of our most valuable forms of fundraising. This is supplemented by appeals for one-off donations. In addition, we receive donations from gifts in Wills (bequests).

We work closely with Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade through negotiated partnerships (NZ government) to fund some of our larger programmes. However, some programmes are wholly reliant on donations from individuals, such as the school programme in a Bangladesh brothel.

The aim of Save the Children is to implement programmes that are sustainable. Once we leave, the community and our local partners will continue planning and implementing activities, carrying on the skills they have learnt through the development process.

Unfortunately, we don’t send volunteers to our programmes internationally. Our programmes are managed through a Save the Children Country Office comprising of local staff.

We have a number of volunteer branches across the country who have a proud tradition of working within their communities to raise awareness and funding to support our vital work around the world. If you’d like to find out if there’s a branch in your area, please contact us on 0800 167 168 or

Emergencies are unpredictable. In a flash, a natural disaster such as Cyclone Harold, ongoing conflict in Yemen and, most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic can change the course of history and radically redirect global resources and attention.


We make sure we have the people, resources and finance in place so that we are able to provide rapid assistance in emergency situations. The quickest way to get emergency relief to a disaster zone is to pre-position supplies, accessible to all our partners. Save the Children has pre-positioned goods all over the world, ready to move them to areas where they are needed most. 


We also work to ensure that communities are prepared before a disaster strikes. We work with children and schools to ensure inclusive emergency planning is embedded within schools and communities. We empower communities and families to respond to identified risks – through activities such as building embankments and strengthening buildings, workshops so children know what to do in an emergency, and training farmers in improved skills or technology to ensure there will be food available during a crisis.

After disasters, people often want to go to the area and volunteer. But this isn’t the best way to make a difference. Save the Children sends trained teams to emergency situations, and our local staff have the advantage of speaking the language, knowing the region and understanding the culture.

The best way for you to support people after an emergency is to donate money.

We are not able to accept donations of clothes or goods. One of the ways that Save the Children prepares for emergencies is to buy supplies in bulk that meet certain standards and position them in various locations throughout the region so that they can be moved quickly when emergencies happen. In an emergency, it’s a lot easier for our teams to organise the stock we already have, rather than coordinate donations of clothing or goods. Our approach saves vital time and money. We know that people want to help, but the best way for you to support the people after an emergency is to donate money.

Your money will go towards purchasing vital relief for those affected in an emergency. The costs of necessities in an emergency situation can be minimal, but the impact upon the lives and well-being of those receiving them is invaluable. For example,

  • $7 can provide water purification tablets in times of disaster, to stop children dying from unsafe drinking water
  • $25 can buy a hygiene kit (towel, soap, glass, toothpaste and brush) for a family, helping keep them safe from viruses like COVID-19
  • $240 could pay for a malaria health kit, to provide treatment for 10,000 people

The exact opposite is the case. Reducing child mortality can help to reduce rates of fertility, and to slow and stabilise population growth. Where mothers and their partners are confident that their children will live, they often choose to have smaller families. Save the Children also works with communities to educate on family planning, and empower women and younger generations to make the right decisions when it comes to controlling their fertility. Statistics have shown that the better educated women are, the fewer children they have, and the better educated their children are – these are all positive outcomes for the planet.

Sadly, for many girls their low status within their families and communities means they lack the power to make their own decisions about whether or when to have a baby. Around the world Save the Children works to change this. We take a multi-faceted approach to improving family planning. 

We support women and girls’ access to education (studies show that women who can access education are abler to make choices about family planning, including using contraception). We train health workers to discuss not only contraception but nutrition and disease prevention – factors that prevent the children they already have from dying. We promote adolescent sexual and reproductive health because no girl should die giving birth, and no child should die as a result of its mother being too young.

We strongly believe that children can and should be champions of their own rights, and we’d be delighted to support young people wanting to get involved.  Your involvement is not only beneficial for other children, it is also something greatly rewarding – helping build skills and confidence. There are a huge range of issues impacting on the lives of young people within Aotearoa New Zealand and across the globe; choose an issue you’re passionate about and start advocating for change! 

Stay tuned! This year we have employed a teacher as our Child, Youth and Schools coordinator. In 2021 we will be developing a range of resources focused on children’s rights and issues with a focus on the needs of kiwi kids. If you would like more information, feel free to email us on

Stay tuned! This year we have employed a teacher as our Child, Youth and Schools coordinator. In 2021 we will be developing a range of resources focused on children’s rights and issues with a focus on the needs of kiwi kids. As our education program develops through 2021, we will be reaching out to schools with ways they can get involved, as well as providing support for using our resources in schools. That said, Kaiako, teachers, are encouraged to reach out to us now if you have a special request or project that you are working on, as we would love to connect with you.

If you would like more information, feel free to email us on

Save the Children New Zealand works hard to make sure donations go where they are most needed - 90 cents out of every dollar donated to Save the Children allows us to raise funds for children and develop and deliver our programmes – allowing us to save lives and help children reach their potential. The remaining 10 cents goes towards covering organisational costs.

There are several, easy ways to donate to Save the Children NZ.

  • On our website here
  • Via phone with your credit/debit card on 0800 167 168, or the telephone numbers you see on your TV adverts.
  • Via post. We currently accept cheques made out to ‘Save the Children’, PO Box 6584, Marion Square, Wellington, 6141. Please note: Our bank, Westpac, will not be accepting cheques from July 2021. We do encourage you to use another payment method to continue your caring support to Save the Children when this change comes into effect in July.
  • Via internet/phone/in-person banking to Save the Children NZ’s Westpac account. Please call us on 0800 167 168 or send us an email on and we’ll give you our bank account number and the correct references to use.
  • To fundraise for Save the Children and get your friends to support you with a donation, set-up a Give a Little page which will track how much you’ve raised


  • The choice is completely up to you!
  • You can donate one-off donations whenever suits you (we’ll send you a receipt shortly after your donation is processed).
  • You can donate every month via credit card or direct debit (we’ll send you a receipt after the end of the tax year for your regular donations).
  • You can donate any frequency via automatic payment .

If you make a one-off website donation you’ll receive an automatic email receipt to the email address you typed into the donation form. Please check your junk mail in case the receipt has ended up there.

If we have an old postal or email address for you or if we can’t match a donation to our database, this may be why you’ve not received a receipt yet. Please contact us if you cannot find/are missing a receipt.

Yes, donations of $5 or more are eligible to apply for a tax rebate of 33.33%.  Save the Children provides receipts for donations but any tax claim must go through Inland Revenue Department. You can find out more info on their website

Yes. Our Registered Charity No: CC25367.

Bequest – gifts left in Wills (see ‘Bequest’ section for more info)

In Memory – a donation made in memory of a loved one who has passed away.

In Honour - a donation made in honour of someone special.

The Good Gift – a general donation to Save the Children. We’ll send you a receipt and card(s) either via email or post, which you can give to that special someone.

Please let us know if your gift is one of these so we can communicate this to you properly.

A Will is a legal document that can safeguard the future of the people and causes you most cherish.  It records exactly how you wish your assets and possessions to be distributed after your death.  Having a Will brings peace of mind, knowing that your affairs are in order. A bequest is a gift in a Will. It is a thoughtful way for you to support your loved ones and your favourite causes in the future. You can learn more here about leaving a gift in your Will to Save the Children New Zealand.

If you would like to know more about leaving a gift in your Will to Save the Children New Zealand, please contact:

Kate Dixon
Legacies Manager
Free phone 0800 167 168 or 022 492 5446

Giving to our general funds i.e. no restrictions on how it can be spent, is the best way to contribute to the success of our work. Such donations require less administrative time and are therefore more cost-effective, enabling us to support more children round the world. General funds ensure all projects receive enough funding and that no projects are over-funded. General funds also offer us the flexibility to respond quickly to developing situations and emergencies. 

Donations over $5,000 can be designated to a particular country or globally to a specific theme of our work, such as education, disaster preparedness, emergency response and child poverty. Alternatively, it could be tagged to the area of greatest need.

Monthly donations are put to work where the need is greatest, an always-changing situation that we monitor every day.

Yes.  They are professionally trained fundraisers, and the support they generate for children in need is vital. 

You will receive an email when you join (if you have given us your email address). You will also receive a welcome pack in the post before your first donation is processed (providing we have a valid postal address for you). From then on you will receive selected communications to show you how your support makes a difference, along with opportunities to make a special one-off donation. Please call us on 0800 167 168 or email if you would like to change the type of communication or the frequency.

Save the Children will provide updates on the amazing work you’re making possible, provide opportunities for you to support us in other ways, and provide you with official tax receipts for your donations. You can choose to opt-out of any or all communications by contacting us. Please see here our full donor promise to you.

We will require written – postal or email – correspondence if you are requesting a refund. The final decision rests with the Fundraising Director.


Face-to-face fundraising is when you are asked to sign up for a monthly donation either on the street, at a shopping mall, or at your home. It is one of the most effective ways to increase awareness about our work and raise much needed funds for our programmes. For a charity, it is a cost-efficient way of letting the public know about what we are doing and how they can help. Many of the donors who sign up will support us for years, helping to transform children’s lives and give them a brighter future.

We are a member of The Public Fundraising Regulatory Association (PFRA). The PFRA regulates and monitors all face-to-face fundraising across New Zealand.

For more information, please visit

Our fundraisers wear Save the Children branded clothing and will have photo ID.  You will also receive an email (providing you choose to give us these details) when you sign up. If you are uncertain about a fundraiser or want to report any details of your conversation, please contact us by calling 0800 167 168 or emailing

It is one of the most effective ways to increase awareness about our work and raise much needed funds for our programmes. For a charity, it is a cost-efficient way of letting the public know about what we are doing and how they can help.

You will have filled out a Save the Children survey or petition, or entered a competition that allows third parties to contact you. Our call centre will attempt to call you and see if you’d be interested in signing up for a monthly donation. If you do not answer your phone at first attempt, your number will be tried multiple times. If you wish to be taken off of the telephone list, please contact us with your name and telephone number.

Without a professional fundraising programme, we would not be able to continue our work for children.  Our fundraising adverts are a very successful and cost-effective way for us to gain new supporters. In addition, the supporters who respond to our TV adverts are amongst the most engaged and committed supporters in the long term. All our adverts have been approved by The Commercial Approvals Bureau (CAB) for broadcast on daytime television.

The children and families you see in our adverts are real children and families who have benefitted from Save the Children’s support. The footage shown is real footage from our programmes. Wherever possible we will try to find out more about the children featured after we have filmed them, so that we can update supporters on their story over time.

A Will is a legal document that can safeguard the future of the people and causes you most cherish.  It records exactly how you wish your assets and possessions to be distributed after your death.  Having a Will brings peace of mind, knowing that your affairs are in order.

A bequest is a gift in a Will. It is a thoughtful way for you to support your loved ones and your favourite causes in the future.

We recommend that you consult your lawyer or other legal advisor to ensure that your Will is worded correctly and witnessed and signed properly. If you do not have a lawyer contact the New Zealand Law Society (04) 472 7837,, or Citizens Advice Bureau 0800 367 222,

Yes. If you already have a Will it is very easy for your lawyer to add a codicil to keep your Will up to date.

No - bequests come in all sizes and are all valued by Save the Children. Many people find that a bequest is an ideal way to make a lasting contribution without impacting on their financial needs during their lifetime.

We appreciate that looking after your family is your priority. Once you are happy that their needs are provided for you may wish to consider leaving a bequest to Save the Children.

Your lawyer will be able to provide wording for your Will to take account of any changes in your family or personal circumstances, such as marriage or divorce, and the birth of children or grandchildren. It is important to review your Will regularly and make any updates that are needed.

There are a number of options for leaving a gift in your Will to Save the Children:

A specific sum or percentage of your estate:

  • A specific sum is an option but it is a good idea to think about the effects of inflation over time. What may seem like a large amount now may not seem so in years to come. Nominating a percentage of your estate instead of a cash sum means that you do not have to keep adjusting your gift to allow for inflation.

The residue of your estate:

  • You gift what is left from your estate after all other gifts and costs have been deducted.


A specific gift of property or other assets:

  • Other than property, your gift could be of shares, bonds or insurance policies.

The following is the wording to use (delete as appropriate):

 “I give and bequeath to Save the Children New Zealand ___ (insert here either % of estate, or residue of estate, or a sum of money, or a description of property or assets) for general purposes. A receipt given on behalf of Save the Children New Zealand will be a complete discharge to my trustees for the bequest”.

As your bequest is unlikely to be realised for some years to come, we recommend that it is made for general purposes, so that our successors can have the flexibility to direct it to the area of greatest need at the time. However, if you are interested in directing your gift to a specific area of our work please call us on 0800 167 168 to discuss some options.

We recommend you keep your family informed of your bequest intentions. We would also greatly appreciate knowing of your plans so that we can thank you for your support and invite you to become a member of the Eglantyne Jebb Society, a special group of confirmed bequest supporters named for our inspirational founder, Eglantyne Jebb.

As a member you will receive updates on our work and invitations to special events. There are no fees or obligations associated with membership; rather the Society has been established as a way for us to thank and acknowledge our very special bequest donors.

Any bequest details that you choose to share with us will remain confidential.

If you would like to know more about leaving a gift in your Will to Save the Children New Zealand, please contact:

Diana Meads

Relationship Fundraising Manager

Free phone 0800 167 168 or (04) 381 7577