Responding to funding where it’s needed most

Greta Buchanan
Manager
Northland Community Foundation

31 July 2020

It’s been quite a year. When Covid-19 hit, we knew we had to respond to the growing needs in our community and we very quickly set up the Northland Covid-19 Emergency Response Fund, for generous locals to contribute to. Within hours we had an anonymous donor gift of over $40,000 and other significant donors came on board, including The Tindall Foundation and Foundation North. Together, with more generous individuals donating, we raised over $90,000 to go out to our community where it will be needed most.

We established a panel of decision makers for the grants and identified gaps in Government funding and priorities for funding, swiftly setting up an application process for those charities needing financial assistance. We were able to establish a quick turn-around of $5000 grants to those most in need.

And those grants were certainly needed! We supplied care packs to some of the most deprived communities, provided support for the food bank at Open Arms Whangarei, Multicultural Whangarei and Bream Bay Community Trust, among others. Community needs were changing before our eyes and it was wonderful to be able to step up and provide the support where it was needed most, and all because of the generosity of local donors.

A Vulnerable Patient Support Fund at Northland District DHB was also established. This Fund provides grants of up to $500 to each vulnerable patient to help them out with paying their groceries, power bills, travel costs, accommodation, warm clothes and/or heating etc. This turned out to be a really crucial avenue for funding for those who were experiencing intense financial stress.

Covid-19 is certainly having a ripple effect for many whānau in the community and our Emergency Response Fund has now been renamed the Northland Covid-19 Recovery Fund. We know that many charities and community groups in Northland have not been able to fundraise and have experienced an increased demand in services; it’s a double-whammy and the Ccovid-19 Recovery Fund will continue to take donations and provide funding to where it is needed most throughout the recovery phase.

Date Posted: 31 Jul 2020

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