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Boost for creative arts in Raahui Pookeka Huntly

Supporting the community with opportunities to learn about and engage in different art forms are key to the mission of the Raahui Pookeka Huntly Arts Strategy, which was launched at Huntly Arts in the Park last month.

The strategy looks to support, encourage and guide creative arts to flourish in Huntly over the next five years.

“The document puts into writing the goals and aspirations that the community has in the creative arts space,” says Waikato District Council Community-Led Development Advisor Lianne Van Den Bemd.

“It reflects their vision and desires and we’re incredibly proud of the mahi that the community put into the development of this strategy.”

The strategy outlines a plan to support and grow creative arts in Huntly, acting as a starting point for creating pathways for local authorities, community groups, iwi, education providers and locals to support each other and grow arts and culture in the wider Huntly area.

“It is truly indicative of community passion and vision, and we look forward to seeing how this supports the future of arts in Huntly to continue to grow and flourish.

“Bringing this to life simply wouldn’t have been possible without the committed and motivated team that put the support behind it, particularly Evelyn Shead and Sasha McGaughran.”

Council’s Community-Led Development Team offered mentoring, funding and support to the group in partnership with Creative Waikato.

One-year goals, guided by the strategy, include more art exhibitions and sales, a locally Huntly film club, continued community visual improvement, musical events, more local markets, connecting artist database and non-conventional workshops.

Three-to-five-year goals focus more on building relationships with the creative community and local programmes and events such as a rotating artists exhibit, performance art/community theatre shows, movies at the domain, seasonal festivities, a creative Huntly art hub and more.

Special thanks to supporting organisations Creative Waikato, Creative New Zealand, Friendship House Huntly Community charitable Trust, Huntly Community Board and the Huntly community.

If you have questions or want to learn more about how to develop something similar for your area, please touch base with Community-Led Development Advisor Lianne Van Den Bemd.