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Community enterprises strengthening communities

12 November 2002 Media Statement

Community enterprises strengthening local communities and creating employment


Fifty-six community-based enterprises providing services in areas as diverse as recycling, tourism and silviculture are now operating with support from the government’s Community Employment Organisation (CEO) initiative.

The Community Employment Group’s CEO initiative supports the creation of community enterprises, not in competition with other operators, to provide services for community development. The government provides a mix of advisory support and financial assistance, including establishment grants for the community enterprises and wage subsidies for formerly unemployed people taken on by those community enterprises. To date just over $2.5m in grant funding has been paid to the 56 enterprises and $1m has be spent on job subsidies for 212 former beneficiaries now employed with them. A further 528 unsubsidised jobs have been created by the community enterprises.

Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey said he is pleased with the way the CEO initiative is developing.

“Community development has been considerably boosted by the 56 community-based enterprises now established with the help of the CEO initiative. Employment with a CEO is also providing a concrete stepping stone for former unemployed New Zealanders to return to the wider labour market and to a real paying job.

“The scheme has been slow to develop, the list of community enterprises now participating in the scheme, and employing people, is impressive.

“Examples include:
- Vanished World Inc, which operates out of Oamaru, provide guided tours of fossil sites for local and overseas visitors. It has created three jobs. Training programmes on interpretative tour guiding are being developed for staff, based on NZQA and university courses. It has established partnerships with other heritage tourism operators and is working with tourism organisations and hotel chains in terms of marketing and promoting packages for tourists. Spin-offs for local hospitality service providers have been generated and it is expected that they will multiply following the completion of a new Fossil Centre;

- Te Whanau Paneke Inc, which operates out of Lower Hutt, runs a tourist-oriented retail outlet called Mâori Treasures and provides support for local Mâori artists. It is employing 10 people (seven of which are subsidies positions), exceeding its target of 9 jobs. It has established a harakeke supply network for weavers, who in turn supply Mâori Treasures with woven items. A spin-off has been the development of a cottage industry of weavers, painters, and potters who market their work through Mâori Treasures. Other iwi and Pacific groups are looking at Mâori Treasures with a view to establishing their own outlets based on the Mâori Treasures model; and,

- Whaingaroa Harbour Care, which operates out of Raglan, runs a service to improve water quality and marine life through harbour fringe plantings. It has won a Green Ribbon Conservation Award for services to the environment. It is employing 4 people (three of which are subsidies positions), exceeding its target of 3 jobs. It has quickly matured to the stage where it is operating independently.

“It is anticipated that further community enterprises will be established with the support of the CEO initiative in the coming year,” Steve Maharey said.

ENDS

Attached is a regional list giving examples and brief descriptions of existing community employment organisations.

Examples of Community Employment Organisations


Northland

Community Environment and Business Centre (Kaitaia) is establishing an enterprise marketing a proven solar water heating system across communities in the Far North of the North Island. It was approved a grant of $80,000, with seven jobs planned to be created. A further $100,000 has now been approved, with three jobs planned to be created. Energy savings across the Far North, from the wider adoption of the solar water heating systems, will lower regional energy costs and assist economic development. Production and installation processes for the solar heating units are providing employment and on-the-job training opportunities. As the enterprise expands, it will offer the franchise for the product to community groups throughout New Zealand.

Auckland

He Iwi Kotahi Tatau Trust (Moerewa) provides services to low-income community members including an energy efficiency upgrading service for homes, a recycling centre, and a web-page design business. It was approved a grant of $75,000, with eight jobs planned to be created.

Moving Image Centre (central Auckland) promotes young digital-media artists. It was approved a grant of $24,940, with three jobs planned to be created. Activities established at low-cost include an editing suite for aspiring film-making talent, gallery exposure of new artists, an educational resource for schools, and a public video library.

Peer Health Development (central Auckland) provides opportunities for youth without prior formal training to develop graphic arts skills and learn to create resources that target their peers. It was approved a grant of $62,100, with seven jobs planned to be created. Some of their upskilled employees have moved on to take up further career opportunities.

Coromandel

Thames Energy Futures Trust operates an energy efficiency upgrading service for homes in the Thames area, together with a resource efficiency education programme for local communities. It was approved a grant of $35,000, with four jobs planned to be created. It is now operating independently and investigating extensions to its business activities.

Waikato

Kirikiriroa Marae Trust (Hamilton) is developing forestry contract work in the central North Island from Taumaranui northwards to North Waikato and Coromandel. It was approved a grant of $75,000, with 12 jobs planned to be created. Unemployed Mâori are filling 75% of the jobs created and industry qualification training is being provided.

Te Omeka Trust (Matamata) is developing a food production enterprise based in the Bay of Plenty - Waikato, that is providing employment for disadvantaged people in the labour market. It was approved a grant of $80,000, with eight jobs planned to be created. Ingredients are sourced mainly from the market gardens and stock farms of Mâori land corporations. It is providing employment, training opportunities, and motivation for unemployed people. Its food production operations have helped sustain the ongoing viability of other firms in the signage, freightage, and raw-product segments of the food industry.

Whaingaroa Harbour Care (Raglan) operates a service that improves water quality and marine life through harbour fringe plantings and has won a Green Ribbon Conservation Award for services to the environment. It was approved a grant of $15,500, with three jobs planned to be created. It has quickly matured to the stage where it is operating independently.

X-treme Waste Society Inc (Raglan) operates a recycling centre and a community-outreach education programme. It was approved a grant of $19,795, with one job planned to be created. Over 70% of the material brought to the centre for recycling has been diverted from landfill, and the centre's new retail outlet is 80% stocked with products from recycling. The education programme includes a weekly radio show, community events, and a local newspaper.

Bay of Plenty

Compass Community Trust (Tauranga) undertakes refurbishment and development work leading to the creation of employment opportunities and on-the-job training for long-term unemployed persons. It was approved a grant of $59,500, with five jobs planned to be created. An additional $56,300 has now been approved, with two jobs planned to be created. Its employees work on buildings and structures within the Compass Community Village, a colonial style village where 65 community groups and trusts are accommodated.

Te Tawharau Charitable Trust (Te Teko) is developing E-Commerce solution services in Te Teko. It was approved a grant of $41,000, with six jobs planned to be created. Development of E-Commerce services will provide information technology employment opportunities for local people.

Gisborne/East Coast

Matakaoa Charitable Work Trust (Hicks Bay) provides employment opportunities for disadvantaged rural unemployed persons. It was approved a grant of $80,000, with four jobs planned to be created. Employees are given work on farm projects as well as community projects. Training is provided for employees to promote best practice in calf rearing, possum control, bee keeping, and zero waste refuse management.
Ngai Tai Iwi Authority (Opotiki) provides affordable, quality housing and garaging options for communities in the Bay of Plenty region. It was approved a grant of $24,400, with eight jobs planned to be created. Its building operations provide opportunities, through training and education, for local people to find employment in the building trade. These include apprenticeships, and sales and marketing positions.

Te Runanga O Turanganui A Kiwa (Gisborne) is developing fishing operations from its base in the Gisborne area. It was approved a grant of $49,500, with one and one half jobs planned to be created. Further development of its governance, management, and commercial structures for the fishing operation is expected to build capacity and capability for independent operation and lead to the creation of employment opportunities.

Tokomaru Bay Community Group Charitable Trust has been developing and establishing an internet café service in Hicks Bay. It was approved a grant of $29,000, with one job planned to be created. It specialises in the provision of low-cost internet services and computer education.

Vanessa Lowndes Centre (Gisborne) is operating a small engraving business. It was approved a grant of $25,000, with one job planned to be created. The nature of the business enables it to provide pre-vocational services and employment opportunities for disabled people within the Tairawhiti region.

Waiapu Work Trust (Tikitiki) operates in the Waiapu Valley to provide work for unemployed people in the surrounding East Coast district. It was approved a grant of $80,000, with 42 jobs planned to be created. It provides employment and on-the-job training opportunities for unskilled local people through the provision of contract services to the farming and forestry sectors, and through sheep and cattle farming on leasehold land.

Central North Island

Te Kupenga Trust (Taupo) trainees provide a labour pool service as part of a Mâori tourism business incubator. It was approved a grant of $142,000, with 16 jobs planned to be created.

Te Mauku Trust (Taupo) operates an eco-cultural tourism initiative that is providing local employment opportunities with spin-offs for the local cottage and hospitality industries. It was approved a grant of $40,000, with two jobs planned to be created. Trust employees have begun providing mentoring to other community organisations.

Taranaki

Ta'i Taatou Trust (New Plymouth) operates a labour-intensive firewood and by-product supply and marketing operation in the Waitara area. It was approved a grant of $30,000, with two jobs planned to be created. The operation is providing employment opportunities for disadvantaged long-term unemployed Mâori with minimal school qualifications, and criminal convictions. Training opportunities provided with employment include NZQA accreditation for chainsaw safety, use, and maintenance, and basic first-aid training. Marketable by-products generated are sawdust, mulch, and compost. Value-adding processing of timber for fencing materials is planned, that will generate more income and provide further employment opportunities.

Manawatu

Genesis Trust (Palmerston North) offers employment to people with criminal histories and supports their efforts to become productive employees and stay crime-free. It was approved a grant of $79,718, with 20 jobs planned to be created. An additional $96,000 has now been approved. Identification of learning disabilities is given high priority so that relevant agency support can be initiated.

Te Rangimarie Marae Committee (Palmerston North) operates community outreach services and programmes that provide learning opportunities based on kaupapa Mâori. It was approved a grant of $30,000, with five jobs planned to be created. Revenue is generated from fees charged to groups in the wider Palmerston North community that purchase the services and programmes. Employment opportunities have been created to meet the demand for services and programmes. Spin-offs for the Rangiotu community and district have been visitors requiring catering and overnight stays, and demand for arts and crafts.

Wellington

Hosanna Global Trust (Lower Hutt) assists Pacific People to establish businesses, and provides a placement service for long-term unemployed Pacific Peoples. It was approved a grant of $51,993, with four jobs planned to be created. A further $82,859 has now been approved, with one job planned to be created. The CEO has developed the necessary client databases and has networks with potential employers and student liaison advisors.

Kaitiaki O Kapiti Charitable Trust (Otaki) operates whanau owned eco-tourism initiatives on Kapiti Island including guided or self-guided walking tours, kayaking, snorkelling, an educational overview, and camps and special programmes for children. It was approved a grant of $28,000, with three jobs planned to be created. A spin-off has been that other Mâori are accessing the experiences of the organisation as a resource for developing tourism initiatives.
SPCA Wellington (Newtown) established a full-time administration position that enabled its veterinary arm to operate more effectively as an income stream. It was approved a grant of $10,530, with one job planned to be created. An outcome sought is for animal welfare services in the wider Wellington community to become more effective.

Te Whanau Paneke Inc (Lower Hutt) provides support and a retail outlet called Mâori Treasures for local Mâori artists to market their creations to tourists. It was approved a grant, with nine jobs planned to be created. Links with other local tourism activities have been developed and a harakeke supply network has been established for the weavers, who in turn supply Mâori Treasures with woven items. A spin-off has been the development of a cottage industry of weavers, painters, and potters who market their work through Mâori Treasures. Iwi and Pacific peoples' delegations are consulting with Mâori Treasures with a view to establishing their own outlets based on the Mâori Treasures model.

Nelson

Golden Bay Organic Employment and Education Trust (Takaka) operates a shop selling locally grown organic produce that has created employment for people who were formerly unemployed or part-time. It was approved a grant of $15,888, with three jobs planned to be created. An additional $11,082 has now been approved. The shop has earned a 'Top Shop Award' and local growers have picked up extra work due to increased demand for the shop's produce.

Kahurangi Employment Trust (Nelson) operates a recycling service diverting approximately 20 cubic metres of waste weekly from landfill. It was approved a grant of $15,053, with two jobs planned to be created. It operates a shop currently generating approximately $100 per week from the sale of recycled products.

West Coast

Ross Goldfields Information and Heritage Centre provides an information centre, retail outlet, and tourism activities associated with the gold prospecting history of Ross. It was approved a grant of $30,000, with one job planned to be created.

The Blue Spur Development and Promotion Association Inc (Hokitika) provides a local tourism information centre. It was approved a grant of $16,925, with one job planned to be created. Visitor numbers at the centre are steadily increasing and the service has been successful in encouraging more tourists to stay in the district longer, on average.

Canterbury

Global Kitchen Trust (Christchurch) is based at the Pasefika Education and Employment Training Organisation (PEETO) in Christchurch and operates a labour pool for catering assignments. It was approved a grant of $28,930, with three jobs planned to be created. It employs migrants and refugees whose skills cover a range of ethnic cuisines. The catering operations also provide a meeting place/focal point for migrants and refugees.

Innovative Waste Kaikoura Ltd (Kaikoura) provides environmentally sustainable waste collections and recycling contract services. It was approved a grant of $25,000, with three jobs planned to be created. It has quickly matured to the stage where it is now operating independently and has no further need of grant funding.

Looking Good Employment Trust (Christchurch) provides education and support to unemployed people to enable them to gain a clear understanding of ways to increase their confidence and self esteem in preparation for a job interview or other life challenge. It was approved a grant of $19,700, with three jobs planned to be created. During the first year of operation, it worked with 271 participants, 50 of whom moved into full-time employment, 32 into part-time employment, and 45 into training. It is now operating independently.

Organic City Trust (Opawa) undertakes marketing, promotion, and education activities, relating to organic produce and operates a warehouse servicing organic farming operations. It was approved a grant of $55,209, with two jobs planned to be created. The Trust is facilitating communication between organic growers and their customers so that growers become more responsive to demand. Organic horticultural students are offered work experience opportunities at the warehouse.

Peel Forests Outdoor Pursuits (Geraldine) has developed an Eco Centre for a range of groups including schools, sports teams, and youth groups, to undertake outdoor, adventure-based, environmental education residential programmes. It was approved a grant of $56,250, with six jobs planned to be created.

Schizophrenia Fellowship Canterbury Branch (Christchurch) is developing an enterprise in the Christchurch area supplying and delivering 'small garden' compost (Zoo Doo) made of reconstituted and processed animal dung from Orana park. It was approved a grant of $47,200, with one and one half jobs planned to be created. Other products include Rose Mulch, Terracotta Tub Mix, and Bark Nuggets. It has the capacity to become independent and to provide vocational opportunities for people with schizophrenia and related disorders that may, in time, enable them to sustain full or part-time employment.

Teamworks South Canterbury (South Canterbury Rugby Football Union Inc based in Timaru) operates an employment labour pool in South Canterbury. It was approved a grant of $61,713, with 100 jobs planned to be created. The labour pool provides part-time, casual, permanent, and new skill opportunities for unemployed persons.

Taua Mahi Trust (Christchurch) provides basic training employment opportunities that enable low-income, low-skilled people to learn how to maintain vehicles in roadworthy condition. It was approved a grant of $48,440, with ten jobs planned to be created. The target group is youth and the limited employment opportunities they compete for are often part-time and at a distance. Through repairing their cars the trainees gain access to employment opportunities in the wider community. Additional income for the Trust is generated from servicing vehicles of regular customers.

Te Runanga O Nga Maata Waaka Inc (Christchurch) is establishing a recording studio that will provide contract services in sound recording. Itwas approved a grant of $45,000, with one and one half jobs planned to be created.

Therapeutic Arts Trust is establishing a retail outlet for home-grown products of artists, musicians, and designers in the Christchurch area. It was approved a grant of $58,295, with three jobs planned to be created. Exhibitions and performances are creating further enterprise and employment opportunities, particularly for youthful aspiring artists, musicians, and designers.

Wastebusters Trust Canterbury (Ashburton) operates a kerb-side recycling service together with education advisory services to councils, communities, and other waste recycling operators. It was approved a grant of $60,000, with two jobs planned to be created. It processes and markets 140 tonnes of materials for recycling per month. Spin-offs for the local economy include increased revenues for transport, engineering, and electrical companies.

Otago

Approach Employment Training (Dunedin) is establishing a community enterprise based on commercial catering. Financial surpluses from catering operations are used to subsidise affordable and nutritious lunches at 10 low-decile primary schools in Dunedin. It was approved a grant of $27,798, with two jobs planned to be created. A further $29,981 has now been approved, with three jobs planned to be created. During the first year of operation, the CEO provided 30,000 school lunches.

Nga Tukukitanga O Taieri (Mosgiel) is developing a community recycling centre and shop, at the Dunedin City Council Landfill. It was approved a grant of $50,660, with four jobs planned to be created. Recycling and selling of recycled materials is providing employment opportunities in the Mosgiel area and low income families are benefiting from being able to purchase repaired household items at affordable prices. Its operations are based on the triple-bottom-line accounting approach and any long-term profits will help fund community educational and social projects.
Palmerston Gateway to Gold is developing a community-based business to attract visitors to the town and create sustainable employment opportunities for unemployed people. It was approved a grant of $35,022, with two jobs planned to be created. Increases in visitor numbers are having major economic development spin-offs for the community.

Youthgrow (Presbyterian Support – Otago based in Dunedin) provides employment and on-the-job training opportunities for low-skilled youth who are disadvantaged in the labour market. It was approved a grant of $15,000, with one job planned to be created. Employee numbers are steadily increasing, with the time taken to win outside employment averaging around two years. One employee has progressed to a tertiary training institute and on to employment, another has won a job in Invercargill, and two others have won places in the modern apprenticeship scheme.

Vanished World Inc (Oamaru) provides guided tours of fossil sites for local and overseas visitors and a fossil centre is under construction. It was approved a grant of $50,000, with three jobs planned to be created. Partnerships with three local enterprises have been mutually beneficial in terms of increased visitor numbers. Spin-offs for local hospitality service providers are expected when the fossil centre is completed.

Southland

Southland Mature Employment Charitable Trust (Invercargill) provides employment opportunities and related training for urban disadvantaged unemployed. It was approved a grant of $35,111, with seven jobs planned to be created. An additional $38,430 has now been approved. It has increased its community networking and undertakes a range of activities in the community providing respite care, childcare, rest-room attendants, and general services such as gardening.

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