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Ecosanctuary set to grow thanks to Lottery grant


Hon Rick Barker
Minister of Internal Affairs

22 July 2008
Media Statement
Ecosanctuary set to grow thanks to Lottery grant

A grant of up to $1.5 million from the Lottery Significant Projects Fund will allow the Otago Natural History Trust to construct a visitor and education centre at the Orokonui Ecosanctuary, Internal Affairs Minister Rick Barker announced today.

"The work will complete the ecosanctuary infrastructure and enable it to be opened to the public," Mr Barker said.

"As the South Island’s largest forest sanctuary with a predator-proof fence, the Ecosanctuary is striving to become a leader in the conservation of threatened species.

"This project will not only play an important role in New Zealand’s conservation efforts, it will also be a world-class tourist attraction for the region. Nowhere else in the South Island will visitors be able to readily see many of New Zealand’s rare and unique species of life.

"The Ecosanctuary is spread across 307ha of forest, located 20 kilometres north of Dunedin. With strong support from the local communities, the Trust relies heavily of the efforts of its volunteers. They perform important tasks such as pest eradication, monitoring and repairing fences, planting, weeding, and habitat restoration," Mr Barker said.

The Lottery Significant Projects Fund provides opportunities for the development of projects that are of benefit at the wider community, regional or national level. The Fund is for projects that have received funding from other sources, including from the community, but are still unable to raise sufficient money to complete the project.

"The precursor to the Lottery Significant Projects Fund was the Significant Community Based Projects Fund. Prime Minister Helen Clark identified large numbers of worthwhile projects, of both a regional and national significance that just needed that last piece of funding to get to the finish line and the Crown fund was established in 2005.

"When this fund expired it was clear that there was still a strong demand for funding of this kind and the Lottery Significant Projects Fund was set up," Mr Barker said.

Funding is for capital expenditure to completion of projects costing at least $1 million in total. Projects must contribute to one or more of the outcome areas of arts, culture and heritage, sport and recreation, conservation and the environment, visitor services and tourism and economic development.

The New Zealand Lottery Grants Board has allocated $16 million for distribution to significant projects in 2008/09. Lottery funds come from the profits of the NZ Lotteries Commission. The Lottery Grants Board is an independent decision making body. It sets policy and allocates funds to be distributed by Distribution Committees.

For more information on Lottery grants see www.dia.govt.nz or www.cdgo.govt.nz.


ENDS

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