Local funders TECT, Acorn Foundation, BayTrust and Tauranga City Council have announced a transition to phase two of their COVID-19 funding support, with an aim to help key Western Bay of Plenty community groups survive the medium-term impact of Covid-19.
While the initial Rapid Response Fund launched by the funders in April provided emergency support, this new WBOP COVID-19 Recovery Fund will aid the recovery phase; enabling the longer-term rebuild of the community sector.
The fund is part two of a three-phase approach planned by the funders. While the first phase aimed to support groups facing immediate challenges created by COVID-19, the second phase will support the medium-term recovery, and the third phase will support the longer-term resilience and reinvention of the sector.
BayTrust Chief Executive Alastair Rhodes says the funders were pleased with the feedback they received from successful Rapid Response Funding recipients, with many stating they appreciated the speed and ease of the process.
“The first phase has been really successful. We supported 33 community groups, and established a system of collaboration with other local funders that has enabled a single application and quick turn-around of approvals. We will continue with a similar approach through phases two and three.”
Tauranga City Council Mayor Tenby Powell says many community groups in the region have faced an increased demand for services, inability to fundraise, and need to adapt service delivery to operate safely.
“All of these impacts have forced community groups to think outside the box. We are seeing incredible examples of collaboration, adaptation of service, and innovative approaches to address the challenges arising from COVID-19.
“But these come at a cost and we are keen to help our community providers deliver great outcomes by providing joint financial assistance with other local funders. That support will lead to our region coming out stronger on the other side of this crisis.”
Acorn Foundation General Manager Lori Luke says the fund, which is valued at $777,000, will ensure the continuity of support services people rely on in our region.
“We have made it through the initial disruption of lockdown, and now it is time to regroup. We can’t know for sure what the full impact of COVID-19 will be for our community, but by ensuring our community groups are well resourced, we can be confident of their continued service delivery.”
The funders anticipate other funding partners will join the collaborative endeavour and contribute to the fund, providing ever greater impact in our region.
Not-for-profits and non-governmental organisations in Tauranga and the Western Bay of Plenty are eligible to apply to the fund. Priority will be given to groups that provide services that are most likely to have a positive influence on longer-term recovery.
Examples of organisations the fund will support include groups providing immediate or essential services such as food banks, refuges, and emergency housing.
Organisations that work to prevent an escalated need for emergency support will also be eligible, such as budgeting, alcohol and drug services, family violence prevention, and housing advocacy.
Those organisations responding to economic and social issues will also be supported, including community-led engagement programmes, inclusive opportunities, cultural opportunities, and youth engagement programmes.
The fund will complement any government agency support provided for COVID-19 responses, and is not for business as usual operations. Applications for any business as usual operational costs can continue to be made directly with each funder.
Groups must articulate the impact COVID-19 has had on their organisation and demonstrate the need for additional funding in relation to COVID-19 and the priorities of this fund.
For the full Recovery Fund eligibility criteria, Fund outcomes areas and guide for applicants, visit www.tect.org.nz/recovery-fund.