Small Communities Fund

The Small Communities Fund aims to support young people from New Zealand’s island communities to apply for grants of between $2,000 - $5,000 for youth-led initiatives and activities for and by young people aged 12 to 24 years.

About the Small Communities Fund

The Ministry of Youth Development is encouraging young people, aged 12 to 24, to design projects that develop their skills, knowledge, and experience to confidently participate in; and positively contribute to their communities.

We will directly work with New Zealand’s small island communities to ensure our processes to access small-grants are fit for purpose. For example, we are aware that young residents from some of these communities maybe away at a mainland boarding school when other funding rounds are open for applications.

Please note: New Zealand's island communities refer to communities on New Zealand's small inhabited islands such as; Stewart Island, Chatham Island, Great Barrier Island, D'Urville Island, Waiheke Island, Arapaoa Island, Pitt Island, Matakana Island, Raoul Island and Kawau Island.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Small Communities Fund?

The Small Communities Fund provides funding assistance towards projects that support young people, aged 12 to 24, residing in New Zealand’s small island communities to gain skills and experience to achieve and participate confidently their communities.


Why was the Small Communities Fund established?

The Ministry of Youth Development established the Small Communities Fund to ensure young people from New Zealand’s island communities have access to similar opportunities to their peers from mainland New Zealand.

Information available to the Ministry of Youth Development indicates that New Zealand’s island communities are not always in a position to align themselves to apply for funding when a funding round is open. For example, young people maybe away at a mainland school and not available to contribute to a funding application.


How is the Small Communities Fund different from other funds?

The key difference for young people will be that the Small Communities Fund will be available to them when they are available to make applications for funding.

Examples of projects the Ministry of Youth Development would consider funding include initiatives to:

  • facilitate young people’s active contribution to decision-making and develop young people’s leadership skills
  • enable young people to implement projects and events in their communities.


How much funding is available?

There is a total budget of $50,000 per year, for the next three years, for allocation.

For the Small Communities Fund the minimum amount that can be awarded to a project is $2,000 (GST exclusive) per year and the maximum amount is $5,000 (GST exclusive) per year.

We will accept applications for projects running over 1, 2 or 3 years.


When does the Small Communities Fund close for applications?

Applications close at 5.00pm on Monday 30 April 2018.


Who can access the Small Communities Fund?

  • Individuals or groups of young people aged 12 to 24 years old who have the support of a legal entity, for example a community group or youth organisation who will hold the funds in their bank account.
  • Organisations working in partnership with young people.
  • NOTE: Organisations supporting young people or applying for funding need to be a legal entity, e.g. an incorporated society or charitable trust (and registered with the Companies Office).


What types of outcomes will funded projects achieve?

Fund recipients will be required to report on the following expected outcomes:

  • Increasing young people’s resilience through:
    • increased personal and/or social identity
    • increased sense of self-worth and/or self-esteem
    • increased ability to manage change or loss
    • increased social networks
    • increased optimism for the future


    • Increasing young people’s capability through:
      • improved decision-making skills
      • improved communication skills
      • improved self-management skills
      • improved problem-solving skills
      • improved relationship skills
      • increasing participation and/or contribution to their community


    • a minimum of 80% of young people engaging in volunteering and/or activities that contribute to their communities


    • a minimum of 80% of young people completing the Participant Survey.


    For more information about the Small Communities Fund contact:

    Small Communities Fund
    Ministry of Youth Development
    PO Box 1556
    Phone: 04 916 3300/Freephone 0508 FOR MYD (367 693)