A COVID-19 recovery fund has been approved by Auckland Council’s Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committee, with the balance from this year’s Regional Community Development grants programme to fund Rapid Response COVID-19 Recovery grants.
Mayor Phil Goff says, “Auckland Council has allocated more than $63,000 from its Regional Community Development grants programme to support community-led responses to the COVID-19 crisis.
“Our Connected Communities team will set up a taskforce to manage the funding and work with communities to ensure that it is allocated to projects and initiatives that help support local communities to manage and recover from the impacts of the pandemic.
“It’s important that we can support our communities through this tough time and I look forward to seeing the difference these locally led initiatives can make.”
Councillor Alf Filipaina, Chair of the Auckland Council Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committee, says the new grants nicely complement the approved funding from the Regional Community Development grants programme.
“The Regional Community Development grants programme supports community-led projects that have regional impact.
“$201,312 has been allocated to a range of projects targeting community development, including initiatives such as mental health, youth mentoring and increasing community engagement and capacity.
“As an example, we have The Kindness Institute, a rangatahi-led kaupapa Māori and tikanga driven resilience and mental health program, as well as the Chinese New Settlers Services Trust Foundation, who aim for a thriving ethnic community hub through community engagement, capability, volunteering and employment.
“These Regional Community Development grants, along with the balance of $63,688 to the Rapid Response COVID-19 Recovery grants, will ensure funding goes towards those community groups who need it most.”
Auckland Council General Manager Connected Communities, Mirla Edmundson says the COVID-19 Recovery grants will maintain the same principles as the Regional Community Development grants.
“We want to ensure these COVID-19 grants fit with the aim of the wider Regional Community Development grants programme. This means primarily responding to community need and targeting those areas and organisations which need it most.
“This year saw a lower number of applicants for the Regional Community Development grants, and feedback from several regular applicants who did not apply for funding showed organisations were focused on managing COVID-19 organisational issues rather than contestable funding applications.
“Now that we have been approved, our Community Impact COVID-19 taskforce can start to identify funding opportunities.
“I’m proud of this important and meaningful work, and look forward to seeing the great outcomes from this fund.”