Benefactor Backs The Best Of New Zealand Sport
Benefactor Backs The Best Of New Zealand
The announcement of a significant donation from philanthropist businessman Owen Glenn has been described as a critical boost to the efforts of the Millennium Institute of Sport & Health to ensure New Zealand’s high performance sportspeople have the necessary facilities to keep pace with the rest of the world.
The Glenn Family Foundation will provide the seed funding for research by the Millennium Institute into its next stage capital development requirements, financial modelling and a future capital fundraising campaign.
The contribution has been enthusiastically welcomed by the Institute’s CEO Mike Stanley.
“This is great news for New Zealand sport,” he said.
“Owen came to look over our operation at the Millennium Institute recently and was obviously impressed by what he saw. It’s to our benefit that his generosity has extended from New Zealand business to include backing the future of our sportsmen and women.
“This support will enable us to focus the attention of a project team on investigating the best model to use in the further development of the Institute. We have been scoping some much needed extensions to our facilities, but this will enable us to take that planning to another level and look at the development of the whole site. In just six years the Institute has become a key part of New Zealand’s sporting landscape and is pretty much at capacity. Also in those six years the rest of the world has moved on with both facility and scientific developments and we need to keep up.”
The Millennium Institute is now a high performance base for swimming, athletics and weight lifting, and several other sports also use it for preparation of their elite athletes. In addition, the Zealand Academy of Sport North Island and AUT University’s Institute of Sport Science and Recreational Research NZ are based there, creating an extensive knowledge base within the facility.
Mr Stanley said the funding Mr Glenn agreed to through his foundation has also allowed for an objective assessment on the best “Centre of Excellence” model for New Zealand, especially in terms of facilities and service, and also to allow us to explore financial modelling options.
He said the Institute would be working closely with its key partners, AUT University and NZASNI and its stakeholders during the process and that Mr Glenn’s contribution would allow the much-needed research and planning to be fast-tracked.
Mr Stanley said the Institute was fortunate indeed to have attracted the support of Mr Glenn, especially as it was created by “two amazing Kiwi philanthropists, Stephen Tindall and Graeme Avery.” All three have recognised the importance of sport in our society, and the role the Institute plays at the high performance end.
“The Millennium Institute is already contributing enormously to the high performance of New Zealand’s top athletes. I believe we need to ensure that we are utilising the best research and training techniques available. And , of course, we need to provide our current and future crop of athletes with the right training environment to ensure they’re ready to compete with the world’s best” said Mr Glenn. “I’m looking forward to the performance of our athletes in Beijing and am determined to make sure that as a nation we have the ability to compete with the best going forward.”
The Institute would be hosting a ceremony to mark Mr Glenn’s contribution when he next returned to New Zealand.
Owen Glenn is a well known philanthropist, who is also a major benefactor of the University of Auckland’s new business school and many other projects worldwide,