4 Free Grants & Subsidies In New Zealand For Low Income Families

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If you are on a low income and have children under the age of 18, this article will provide you with 4 different grants to help you with your family expenses.


Working for Families Grant

The Working For Families Grant is government-funded by Work and Income & Inland Revenue. It’s designed to help low-income families with childcare and accommodation. The grant is available to working families who can’t afford after school care. You can get a subsidy for up to 20 hours a week, and during the school holidays, up to 50 hours.

(OSCAR) Out of School Care and Recreation provides a safe and educational environment for children while parents have to be at work. It’s best to apply for these subsides 4 weeks in advance, so the government department has time to process your application.

You can apply here.

or here’s the online application form.

First Home Grants In New Zealand

This grant is available if you’re a KiwiSaver member wanting to purchase a home, or if you’re a tenant wishing to buy the house that you are living in. Although it’s called the “first home Grant”, you may still be accepted if have purchased a home before, but found yourself in a similar position to a first home buyer. Perhaps you had to sell your first house and you’re back at square one.

If you’ve been a member of Kiwisaver for longer than 3 years, you can apply for this grant and you can get up to $10,000 towards the purchase of your first home using your KiwiSaver withdrawal. You must leave at least $1000 in your Kiwisaver fund, so be careful not to purchase something you can’t afford.


You can apply for the First Home Grants here.

WINZ Emergency Benefit In New Zealand

The WINZ Emergency Benefit is a one-off payment to help low-income families in New Zealand with unexpected expenses. The benefit is paid as a lump sum and is not means-tested. To be eligible for the benefit, you must be:

  • – A New Zealand citizen or resident
  • – In receipt of an unemployment benefit, sickness benefit, invalids benefit or domestic purposes benefit.
  • – Experiencing financial hardship as a result of an unexpected event such as an accident, illness or job loss.

To apply for the Emergency Benefit, Call 0800 559 009, but first, run through this quick questionnaire to see what you qualify for.


Sole Parent Support In New Zealand

There are a number of grants and subsidies available to sole parents in New Zealand. The main one is the Sole Parent Support benefit, which is available to those who are sole primary caregivers of dependent children. This benefit is means-tested, so your income will affect how much you receive.

You are only eligible for this if you are

20 years or older – If you are younger than 20, please look into the Young Parent Payment here

  • A single parent or caregiver
  • Have one or more dependent children under the age of 14 years
  • You are not in a relationship
  • You’re not receiving adequate financial support.


The In-work Tax Credit is also available to some sole parents. To be eligible, you must be working at least 20 hours per week and earning an income below a certain threshold. This credit can help top up your wages and make it easier to get by on a low income.

If you’re struggling to afford childcare, you may be able to get help through the Working for Families childcare subsidy. This subsidy can cover up to 50% of your childcare costs, making it easier to afford quality care for your child while you work.

Finally, if you’re struggling with housing costs, you may be eligible for the Accommodation Supplement. This supplement can help with the cost of rent or mortgage payments, making it easier to keep a roof over your head.

What are Grants?

There are a number of grants available in New Zealand for low income families. The most common grant is the Accommodation Supplement, which helps with the cost of rent or mortgage payments. Other grants include the Community Services Card, which gives discounts on a range of services, and the Low Income Health Care Card, which entitles holders to free or discounted GP visits and prescriptions.


How to Apply for a Grant

New Zealand offers a variety of grants for low income families. The most common type of grant is the Community Services Card (CSC). To apply for a CSC, you need to visit your local community services office or WINZ centre.

You will need to bring:

  • Your ID (e.g. passport, driver’s license)
  • Proof of your current address (e.g. utilities bill, rental agreement)
  • Income information for all household members (e.g. payslips, benefit statements)
  • Any other relevant information (e.g. evidence of health conditions, caring responsibilities)

A CSC can help you access discounts on a range of essential goods and services, including healthcare, electricity, gas, and water. It can also help you get support from other organisations such as Work and Income NZ and Housing New Zealand.



There are a number of free grants available in New Zealand for low income families. This can be a great way to get some financial assistance if you are struggling to make ends meet. Be sure to check out all the options that are available to you and see if you qualify for any of them.



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