Health and social sectors are struggling with a lack of funding

Rehab centres treating drug and alcohol addiction in New Zealand are forced to rely on handouts as their funding is just enough to “survive”, a manager says.

Peter Rijhnen is the new manager at St Marks Addiction Residential Treatment Centre, the only residential centre in the Top of the South, after previous manager Lois Millar retired in July.

Rijhnen, who worked in collaboration with addiction treatment services in the Netherlands, said there needed to be more centres like St Marks in New Zealand.

People hoping to stay at the Blenheim centre were on a four-month waiting list due to “huge demand” from across the South Island, but limited funding meant adding more beds was not possible, Rijhnen said.