Te Putahitanga o Te Waipounamu has launched the Manaaki20 Fund to help support up to 230 whānau-led enterprises across the South Island.
“The fund has been established as a direct response to the impact that COVID-19 has had on whānau entities and the communities that rely on them for support,” said Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu, Pouārahi, Helen Leahy.
“In the course of our pandemic response we established Manaaki20 to respond to the urgent priorities of whānau. A whānau enterprise survey we initiated revealed that 70% of whānau entities have been impacted by COVID-19 and are facing financial challenges following lockdown. Our response to this has been to make new funding available to shore up the sustainability of entities so they can continue to support whānau in meaningful ways.
“Many entities experienced a loss of income due to less customers and customer demand reduced through lack of access to services or products, or because whānau spending was reprioritised to mitigate their own financial challenges. Additionally, some entities were simply unable to operate.
“Other entities, generally those that did not see income generation as part of their kaupapa, experienced a surge in demand for their support. Entities became busy delivering kai and health packages and offering support for whānau to remain connected to each other. Some entities have seen the number of whānau requiring support double during the lockdown, with many requiring ongoing assistance. That has also taken a toll on limited resources.
“Whānau entities are at the centre of an innovative social enterprise model developed by Te Putahitanga in 2014 and range from commercial businesses through to charitable organisations delivering health, social, education and cultural services.
“The Manaaki20 Fund is targetted at whānau entities that have proven results from prior investment and will assist those that are at risk of collapse but likely to achieve financial sustainability, as well as those that are not eligible for financial support from other sources,” said Leahy.
The Manaaki20 Fund is one of seven new initiatives that have been developed to respond to the emerging crises of COVID-19 affecting whānau.
“The initiatives epitomise a social procurement approach with a shared commitment to improve social outcomes for whānau. They bridge the digital divide, broker employment skills development, encourage responsive recruitment strategies, enable joined up investment and invite closer agency relationships. Most importantly, whānau will be directly involved in designing, developing and delivering change led by their own communities.
“We have conducted 10 funding waves since 2014 and supported 230 whānau entities to establish and operate covering the length and breadth of Te Waipounamu. We currently continue to support 136 of those entities. Our Wave 11 funding round was interrupted due to COVID-19 and will take place later this year when we expect to support the dreams and aspirations of up to another 25 new whānau entities.”
For further information: https://www.manaaki20.org/manaaki-fund-application