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Funding Support Secured For Forestry Pathways Programme

In its latest funding round, Otago Community Trust awarded a $19,611 grant to the Tokomairiro Training Pathways course to assist with the cost of running the Forestry Pathways Programme out of Tokomairiro Training Centre.

Tokomairiro Training programme manager Lynda Allan said the programme specialises in breaking down barriers to learning for young people, who are often at risk of dropping out of school.

“The Forestry Pathways Programme places emphasis on silviculture operations and introduces learners to a variety of industry pathways including future tertiary study and employment”.

The programme has been running for three years now, it is run for two days each week over a 32-week period and is well supported by local high schools and financially supported by several local forestry companies. The feedback we receive from students is overwhelmingly positive with several students now fully employed in the industry, said Ms Allan.

Otago Community Trust chair, Diccon Sim said trustees were particularly impressed with the Forestry Pathways Programme.

“The programme aligns closely with the Trust’s strategic priority of increased access to opportunities, particularly in its ability to provide economic benefits and enhance employment opportunities for a number of young people in Otago.”

A $185,000 grant to the Otago Festival of the Arts Trust was also awarded in September. This grant will support the Dunedin Arts Festival scheduled for October 2022. Festival director Charlie Unwin said that Otago Community Trust’s support is invaluable to the festival, especially given the current climate we find ourselves in and allow us to follow on from the success of the 2021 iteration.

“We will continue to deliver more free events in the city, more engagement with the schools, more diversity in programming and audiences, more accessibility and there is a continuing desire to extend the festival further geographically with shows in Oamaru, Invercargill and Central Otago”.

Other organisations benefiting from grants in September included the Ida Valley Pool Trust who received a $20,000 grant to assist with the cost of a permanent building to house its community swimming pool.

A $17,000 grant was awarded to Te Kakano Aotearoa Trust, a Wānaka community-based native plant nursery that will help with the cost of developing dedicated quarters for its volunteers.

Central Otago District Arts Trust were awarded a $8,000 grant to assist with the cost of producing "People and Place" an ongoing project designed to support, promote and celebrate artists and the arts in the Central Otago region.

In total Otago Community Trust approved just over $395,511 to 26 organisations in September 2021.

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