Useful hints for when you contact us

If a child is in immediate danger, dial 111 or 0508 326 459, 24/7

If you are calling regarding the wellbeing or safety of a child or young person, please share with us as much information about the concerns as possible. This might include things like:

  • what you are worried about
  • details of incidents, including dates
  • details about the child or young person and their family, for example names and addresses
  • the reasons why you think this child is at risk, or suffering abuse and neglect
  • if you're aware of any other times when the family, child or young person has been involved with us or Police.

What we do

We are the Ministry dedicated to supporting any child in New Zealand whose wellbeing is at significant risk of harm now, or in the future. We also work with young people who may have offended, or are likely to offend.

We help families help themselves. We believe all children belong in loving whānau and communities that will nurture them. We team up with many different groups and people so that families have the support they need to help their children thrive.

When children can’t live at home, we'll work with family and whānau and caregivers to find them safe, stable, loving homes.

When young people offend, we want them to get back on track and make good decisions in the future. We'll organise a conference for the young person, their family and the victim of their offending to meet and talk about the impact of their actions. We'll then help them get back on track for a successful future.

We partner up with hundreds of social services providers to build strategic relationships, encourage a deeper commitment and more shared responsibilities.

Reporting a concern

  • Phone: 0508 326 459 or +64 9 912 3820 (from outside New Zealand)
  • Email: contact@ot.govt.nz

If you suspect child abuse or neglect, or are worried about a child or young person, can call our freephone number 24 hours a day, any day of the year, and talk to one of our social workers.  Our social workers are trained to work out what kinds of problems a family might be having, and find the best ways to help them get back on track.

Get in touch if you think a child or young person may be:

  • sexually abused
  • unsafe or in danger of harm
  • suffering from ill-treatment, abuse or neglect
  • or you’re not sure if you should be concerned, and want advice, or just to talk things through.

A social worker will work out how urgent this is, and the best thing to do next.


Child / Tamariki, Youth / Rangatahi

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Our service is free of charge. 

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Bay of Plenty, Canterbury, Central Auckland, Central Lakes, East Auckland, Hawkes Bay, Hutt, Lakes, MidCentral, Nelson Marlborough, North Auckland, Northland, Dunedin - South Otago, South Auckland, South Canterbury, Southland, Tairāwhiti, Taranaki, Waikato, Wairarapa, Waitaki, Wellington, West Auckland, West Coast, Whanganui

Contact Details

If calling outside New Zealand please ring +64 9 912 3820.

Click here for our physical locations throughout New Zealand.

This page was last updated at 5:53PM on May 10, 2022. This information is reviewed and edited by Oranga Tamariki - Ministry for Children.