Napier City Council staff with spare sick leave are donating it to colleagues in need through their new Sick Leave Bank.
Council workers came up with the idea after learning a team leader with cancer had run out of sick leave.
So far, 169 days have been deposited in the bank.
Staff can donate days, as long as they are left with 20 days in their own leave allowance.
Council spokesperson Nicola Crilly said the policy made it easier for staff in dire straits to get time off.
"It's a really good way for staff, if they are in need, having somewhere else to go.
"It takes away that case by case basis of requesting additional leave."
A similar policy at the Marlborough District Council had more than 2000 hours banked within a few months of starting up.