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Te Kauwhata arts programme kicks off

An exciting new community arts programme will kick off in Te Kauwhata and Meremere this year with help from Waikato District Council-administered funding, and the Council is keen to kick-start other community initiatives around the district too.

The new programme is being launched by Te Kauwhata Community House with $5,500 funding from the Creative Communities Scheme and will include a range of activities facilitated through a series of workshops.

Te Kauwhata Community House manager Jo Mako says, “We’ve witnessed an emerging grassroots interest in strengthening the arts community in our village and showcasing the talents of local practitioners. We also see the potential for our arts programme ‘Toi Ako Te Kauwhata’ to contribute to social and community well-being.”

“‘Toi Ako Te Kauwhata’ will be facilitated by local arts manager Lauren Hughes and taught by invited artists, and will feature workshops identified by our community consultation.  Details of the first workshop will be advertised soon,” she says.

The Council’s General Manager Community Growth Clive Morgan says “We’re thrilled to see how Te Kauwhata Community House is making the most of the opportunities that Council-administered funding can provide.  They’ve managed to purchase their own building with $40,000 support from the Waikato District Community Wellbeing Trust Fund along with support from other funders, and now it’s great to see the new arts programme starting as well.”

Clive Morgan says, “We’re keen to see more initiatives of this kind in our district.   Applications are closing soon for a range of Council-administered funds to support community projects and events this year so I encourage community groups to check these out.  Don’t miss the opportunity.”

Another local endeavour the Council recently supported with $5,000 through its newest fund, the Heritage Project Fund, was the production and launch of the book 'Wahia Nga Rua' by Mai Uenuku ki te Whenua Marae.  This illustrated educational resource tells the story of the prominent Waikato chief Ngaere, who lived in the late 1600s, and how Ngaruawahia and the Hakarimata Ranges came to be named.

Three funds have closing dates in February for their first round of applications for the year:
• Waikato District Council Discretionary Grants Fund (closes Friday 2 February)
• Creative Communities Fund (closes Friday 16 February)

• Heritage Project Fund (closes Friday 16 February)

The Waikato District Community Wellbeing Trust Fund has a single funding round for the year which closes on Friday 13 April.

In the past financial year the Council committed grants totalling more than $800,000 for distribution to 174 community groups and charities throughout the district enabling communities to come together to meet local needs. 

These included more than $613,000 of targeted and discretionary Council funds, another $71,256 distributed on behalf of the Creative Communities Scheme Fund, and $125,529 distributed on behalf of the Waikato District Community Wellbeing Trust, an independent trust the Council administers. 

Go to to find out more.


Photo: Te Kauwhata Community House manager Jo Mako (right) with Lauren Hughes, ready to launch the new arts programme.