This page provides a range of different types of funding sources you can apply to. It's aimed particularly at the individuals and organisations with whom Arts Access Aotearoa works: creative spaces, disabled artists, Arts in Corrections practitioners, and arts organisations seeking to improve their accessibility.
Each funder is different in terms of where, what, when and how it funds. Many funders also provide helpful resources you can use to help you prepare your application for funding. Other organisations provide lists of funding sources and the list below is not exhaustive. If you know of any other useful funding sources, please contact Arts Access Aotearoa (E: firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Lists of funding sources
- Philanthropic trusts and foundations
- Gaming trusts
- In-kind sponsorship
- Local council funding
- Government agencies
This service provides information and a comprehensive list of funders. It includes GivUS, GivME and GivER. You normally need a paid subscription to access GivUs, GivMe and GivER but you can access them for free at most public libraries and Disability Information Centres. Some libraries have access to the databases on their websites and so you can log in from offsite if you are a library member.
GivUS: this database lists more than 1200 resource schemes for communities, volunteer organisations and clubs. You can search for a funder according to specific criteria such as region, type of cost and client group.
GivME: this database offers access to more than 4,000 scholarships and grants for individuals.
GivER: connects businesses with community groups to achieve positive social impacts.
Community Foundations of New Zealand
Community Foundations have been established throughout New Zealand, and each region has funds available for application by community groups (for example: The Women's Fund, Auckland Foundation's Grassroots Giving Programme and the North Shore Fund, or The South Canterbury Health Endowment Fund). Check their website for a Foundation branch near you.
Lottery Community Sector Research fund
Applications for funding to support community organisations' research and evaluation can be submitted to Lottery Community Sector Research throughout the year, Committee meets quarterly. For information on check their website
These are listed on GivUS and often have their own website. Do your homework first to ensure you’re eligible and that they fund costs you’re seeking funding for (e.g. some trusts don’t fund salaries).
Arts Foundation funding initiatives support artists’ careers
The Arts Foundation has three funding initiatives: Boosted LIVE, The Arts Foundation Future Fund and the Springboard programme. These initiatives provide opportunities for artists at a time when New Zealand’s creative sector needs urgent help, and New Zealanders need access to arts and culture more than ever. Boosted LIVE gives artists the opportunity to live stream their arts projects, and receive donations supporting them. The Arts Foundation Future Fund is a new initiative with the Foundation’s arts crowdfunding platform, Boosted. Projects that raise at least $1000 will be given a $1000 koha from the Future Fund. The inaugural Springboard programme has announced its six recipients for 2020. The artists are at a formative stage of their careers and receive the funding and mentorships they need to kick start a sustainable career in the arts. The press release is on the Arts Foundation website.
Arts Foundation Springboard programme
A new programme for the Arts Foundation Te Tumu Toi, Springboard aims to kickstart arts careers for up to ten artists in Aotearoa every year. Recipients are gifted $15,000, alongside a partnership with a senior artist mentor from the alumni of Arts Foundation Laureates, Icons, New Generation, residency or Fellowship recipients. Visit its website for more information and deadlines.
The IHC Foundation works to ensure people with an intellectual disability are valued and active members of their communities. Originally setup in 1983 as part of IHC NZ Inc., the IHC Foundation was relaunched in 2007 as a separate charitable trust. It shares IHC's vision for better lives for people with intellectual disability and their families. Funds can be applied for projects that benefit people with intellectual disability, not just those receiving IHC services. Visit its website for more information and deadlines.
National Foundation for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
The National Foundation for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing promotes the interests of more than 880,000+ Deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. The foundation’s trust was set up to invest legacies and investments given to it by the public. Trustees meet four times a year to decide how to distribute the money among the many applicants for scholarships, and grants for training and projects. Many of the grants are for Deaf and hearing impaired people but some funding is also available for people who work in hearing-related areas. Visit its website for more information and deadlines.
Public Trust - Frozen Funds Charitable Trust
The purpose of the Frozen Funds Charitable Trust is to provide grants for projects run by, and for, people who use mental health or intellectual disability services. A new funding theme is available in January of each year. Visit its website for more information and deadlines.
These distribute a portion of the income they receive from pokie machines. They tend to distribute the funding into the area in which it was spent. The Department of Internal Affairs website has a list of gaming societies that invite grants from the public and also some helpful advice on applying for grants. These trusts are often the quickest way to access funding. Most are open to applications all year round, can fund a range of costs, have straightforward application forms, and will respond to your application within two or three months.
Get funding support for your project from members of the community by listing it on a crowdfunding website.
Boosted: supporting arts projects
Boosted is a philanthropic crowdfunding website set up by The Arts Foundation in 2013. It’s aimed at supporting arts projects in New Zealand. Donors to Boosted projects are eligible for tax rebates of 33 per cent of their donations.
Pledgeme is a New Zealand crowdfunding platform that supports the funding of creative projects.
The Funding Network
The Funding Network programme will develop your online fundraising and pitching skills with support of a mentor, will help to raise visibility, and connects your work to new donors and matchfunding. Apply online now
Businesses may provide in-kind goods or services. This is a way for them to fulfil their corporate social responsibility and maintain a positive image and presence in the community: for example, a website developer adapting your website to make it more accessible or a builder putting in a ramp. Do your homework before approaching businesses for in-kind support, and present a business case outlining the benefits for both parties. Acknowledging the sponsor publicly is usually one of these benefits.
Look to individuals in your local community to contribute to something that will benefit their community. Let them know what you are seeking donations for (e.g. a ramp to enable wheelchair access) and this may motivate them to donate.
Each city or district council has different funding schemes. Check out your council’s website and then talk to a funding advisor to find out what funding stream would best suit your purpose and criteria.
Creative Communities Scheme: arts at a local level
This scheme is a partnership between Creative New Zealand and the 74 local authorities throughout New Zealand. It aims to increase participation in the arts at a local level, and increase the range and diversity of arts available to communities. Local decision-making is the key to the scheme and applications are considered by local assessment committees. All New Zealanders (individuals, groups and organisations) are eligible to apply. For funding guidelines and further information about the scheme, visit the Creative NZ Creative Communities webpage or contact your local council’s Creative Communities Scheme administrator.
Wellington City Council’s general grants
Wellington City Council’s general grants has four grant pools: Social, Cultural, Economic and Environmental. Only legally constituted groups (or groups under the umbrella of a legally constituted group) can apply. For more information on grants advice seminars, application criteria and closing dates for applications visit the Wellington City Council website.
Some government departments and agencies offer funding.
Department of Internal Affairs
The Department of Internal Affairs has a range of funding streams, including Lottery, Crown and Trust grants. Information, advice and applications for these funds can be found on its website.
Creative New Zealand
Creative New Zealand, the national arts development agency, offers a range of grants. Information, advice about eligibility and applications can be found on its website.
Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage
Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage offers a range of funding, including the Arts and Culture COVID Recovery Programme announced in late May 2020. This has more than 25 initiatives designed to deliver short-term relief as well as longer-term support for the arts and cultural sector. Visit its website