News | 24 June 2020
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Council grants $1.5 million to Covid-19 recovery

In response to the Covid-19 crisis, Wellington City Council has allocated $1.553 million to support social and community agencies with the recovery – with funding going to 73 projects around the city.

Image of a volunteer and a member of the Aged Concern community

In April, Council committed an additional $1 million to groups and organisations that provide programmes, projects and services that benefit Wellingtonians during and after Covid-19. This week, Council approved funding to recipients that reflect that criteria.

These cover a number of issues including family and domestic violence, food security, homelessness, and wellbeing.

Age Concern Wellington has been allocated $95,094 for its ReConnect programme to continue the services they launched through the lockdown, including phone a friend and pen pal services, grocery shopping and food parcel delivery service, expanding on their coffee groups and developing Connection Hubs, says Age Concern Wellington CEO Stephen Opie.

“We saw some common themes emerging with our region’s older people during the lockdown: confusion, anxiety and no social connection. Helping our city’s seniors recover and reintegrate back into normal life will be an ongoing task.”

So many community groups and organisations had to adapt quickly when Covid-19 arrived on our shores, and Age Concern Wellington really stepped up to the challenge – and continues to do so in the post-lockdown period, says Council’s Grants Subcommittee Chair and Community Well-Being Portfolio Lead, Councillor Fleur Fitzsimons.

“We know that there are older people in Wellington who are isolated and lonely, the funding boost to Age Concern Wellington will help turn this around. I have heard of lonely people who have gone weeks without talking to someone, the Age Concern Accredited Visitor scheme will help build special relationships and start to make our city one which is the opposite of loneliness.

“We received a huge number of applications for this funding, and we were pleased that we were able to allocate a significant sum to many of them. These groups and organisations have really made such a huge contribution to the health and well-being of so many Wellingtonians before Covid-19, during and now.”

Some other major grant recipients:

  • Ngāti Kahungunu ki Pōneke Community Services to support the delivery of services for vulnerable and isolated whanau via a new mobile kaupapa maori service. ($125,000)
  • Vincents Art Workshop – continuing to support and improve wellbeing and delivering psychosocial services through access to arts, tuition, and materials ($56,000)
  • Pablos – providing an open, accessible and safe art space for people experiencing mental illness ($30,000)
  • Wesley Wellington Mission Inc – providing support for vulnerable whānau in the Eastern and Southern areas ($10,000)
  • The Wellington City Mission – a contribution, alongside Government, to improvements at Te Paamaru ($250,000)
  • Take 10 Mobile Youth Support Zone – a youth outreach programme delivering activities and support across the city ($50,000)
  • Shakti Ethnic Women’s Support Group – continue to provide family violence support services related to Covid-19 for the ethnic communities of Wellington ($8,000)
  • Sexual Abuse Prevention Network – supporting school based prevention programmes and programmes impacted by Covid-19($65,737)
  • Kiwi Community Assistance Charitable Trust – support for KCA which has higher demand for food requests from food banks throughout Wellington ($22,806)
  • Island Bay Presbyterian Church – supporting social housing communities with food deliveries, social support and programmes ($11,000)
  • Changemakers Resettlement Forum – support for their response  to additional demand on services from women with refugee backgrounds ($69,350)

Mayor Andy Foster says he’s pleased Council is able to support so many of these diverse groups, organisations, and initiatives, which really make a difference in so many lives.

“These Council allocations are going to organisations that benefit our city’s mental, physical and health well-being, and will also make a big impact on the post-Covid world which has affected so many different walks of life in so many different ways.

“There are also lots of other grants and funding opportunities available from Council as well as Government funding, which we encourage Wellingtonians to consider. If people want more information our funding team are here to advise and connect ideas with the best funding options,” adds the Mayor.

Grants were also available for arts, sport and recreation clubs and organisations that encourage participants back into the arts, and into sport and physical activity once Covid-19 restrictions were lifted – some of these include:

  • CART- Pātaka Taputeranga – teaching traditional Māori concepts of gathering and storing food to rangatahi ($27,500)
  • New Zealand American Football Federation – a taster programme targeting Māori and Pasifika communities with alternative activity to mainstream sport ($4,125)
  • Ethiopian Community in Wellington – providing soccer coaching and mentoring for disadvantaged, vulnerable, and disabled youth from refugee and migrant backgrounds ($3,900)

Multi-year contract funding allocations from 1 July from the Social & Recreation Fund were also approved for a number of organisations, including local groups delivering Youth Development and Youth Work programmes across the city:

  • The Wellington City Mission – contribution to operational support for Te Paamaru at 304 Taranaki Street ($250,000 pa for three years)
  • Youthline – operational support for Youthline programmes with volunteers, schools and community organisations ($80,000 pa for three years)
  • Zeal Education Trust – supporting Zeal programmes providing engagement for young people in CBD and delivering place based programming ($76,000 pa for three years).