Wellington Councils work together to energise the region

25 June 2015

Wellington’s Councils have come together to support arts, cultural and environmental organisations across the region.

Ten of Wellington region’s eco-attractions

Ten of Wellington region's eco-attractions come together for Nature Connections

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The Wellington Amenities Fund is a partnership between Wellington City, Hutt City, Upper Hutt City, Masterton District, Kāpiti Coast District and Porirua City Councils and is focused on arts, cultural and environmental attractions and events to support and add to the vitality of the Wellington region.

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says the Wellington area is a vibrant region with art, culture and a stunning environment.

“Our local authorities collaborate to support activities including eco-culture and cultural festivals,” she says. “Acting regionally means we have significant funds to support projects that will attract visitors to Wellington.” 

The fund was set up in 2012 to support organisations of regional significance with day-to-day operational expenses and new innovative projects that will achieve identified priorities for the region.

In 2014 the Wellington Amenities Fund proudly supported some of the region’s much-loved organisations and events which included

  • Wellington Zoo and Zealandia: $100,000 for Nature Connections
  • Te Papa: $130,000 toward supporting Matariki Wellington 2015
  • Wellington LUX Festival Trust: $100,000 for LUX 2015
  • Mahara Gallery: $55,000 toward operational support.

In a partnership with Zealandia, Amy Hughes, General Manager of Community Engagement at the Wellington Zoo, has helped to secure funding for their project Nature Connections through the fund for the past three years – a project that wouldn’t have been able to exist without this regional funding.

“Through this project we’ve brought together 10 of the region’s eco-attractions, to find our connecting stories and to work on creating a great visitor experience. This project is world leading and we’ve presented Nature Connections to both the World Zoo congress and at an Australasian level.”

Te Papa’s Kaihautū, Arapata Hakiwai says the funding support is helping continue to develop the vibrancy of Matariki celebrations, which are becoming more and more popular.

“Each year Wellington’s Matariki festival engages a wider group of people in our community, who come together to celebrate the Māori New Year. The popularity of events is a testament to the mana of this unique Aotearoa celebration.”

The fund will help to make sure that regionally significant entities can be developed or sustained in the Wellington region to add to the region’s quality of life; attractiveness to residents and visitors; and economy.

Kapiti Mayor, Ross Church says, “Arts and culture in our region is richer and environmental amenities more sustainable because of the existence of the Wellington Amenities Fund. This is a great example of what councils can do by working together, as we do on so many things regionally.”

The next Wellington Amenities Funding round (for 2015/16) opens on Wednesday 1 July and runs until midday on Friday 24 July.

Find out more about the Fund, or contact Katie Taylor-Duke, Wellington Amenities Fund Manager.