The Wellington Regional Amenities Fund (WRAF) is focused on arts, cultural and environmental organisations that can deliver activities that support the fund priorities, thereby contributing to the attractiveness, vitality and well-being of the Wellington Region. Arts, cultural and environmental organisations of regional significance can be supported for operational funding, capital funding or project funding for activities that benefit the Wellington region.
Regionally significant organisations are leaders in their field or have the potential to become leaders. They deliver high quality cultural/environmental activities that reach across the region and draw people to it – making Wellington Region the best place to live and to visit.
Each participating local Council contributes to the fund on a per capita basis.
The fund has three priorities:
To increase their long-term contribution to the economy of the Wellington Region by:
- increasing visitor numbers to the region
- growing audience numbers and diversity
- increasing paid and volunteering opportunities
- ensuring activities are accessible (financially and physically)
- contributing to another key regional growth sector, for example film, hospitality, recreation.
Partner with organisations in the Wellington region to:
- strengthen networks (through skills transfer, knowledge sharing, or increased organisational capacity through sharing resources)
- develop robust, diverse cultural and environmental infrastructures through working in collaboration
- mentor smaller/like organisations, and/or deliver education opportunities
- complement other regional events (by ensuring event calendars align).
Contribute to Wellington’s status as a nationally and internationally competitive region by:
- strengthening its unique arts, cultural and environmental offering
- addressing gaps in the cultural/environmental ecosystem
- ensuring they plan to stay in the Wellington Region.
WRAF decisions are made by the WRAF Joint Committee which is made up of the Mayors of each Territorial Authority that contribute to the fund. The Fund Manager works alongside one representative from each contributing Council (Council Officers Group) who represent their respective CEO. The Officers Group review applications and make funding recommendations to the WRAF Joint Committee
In March 2017 the Joint Committee agreed to a more strategic and proactive approach to the fund, with a focus on regionally significant organisations and on projects and events that have regional impact. This built on the 2016 fund review which emphasised the importance of the fund in supporting organisations (events and projects) that are 'regionally significant' - which deliver identified strategic priorities for the region around; economic growth, regional connectedness and competitive advantage.
In 2016 a detailed evaluation of the grant activity in the first four years of the fund was undertaken, which looked into the economic and social benefits delivered by the fund in the region – Executive summary (1.9MB PDF)
In 2018/19 the Joint Committee agreed to support a smaller number of organisations in order to achieve maximum impact in the region in line with fund priorities. The Joint Committee allocated $600,000 to support The Te Matatini National Kapa Haka Festival (February 2019). The remaining funding available in 2018/19 was allocated in September 2018 to four organisations along with allocations in the subsequent two financial years (2019/20 and 2020/21).
WRAF contributions for 2019/20 have been confirmed for all Councils with the exception of Kāpiti Coast District Council who have withdrawn from the fund in their 2019/20 Annual Plan.
To see how WRAF has been allocated, see: Past allocations (247KB PDF)
Mark Farrar, Fund Manager