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Government supports Pacific-led solutions with STEM

Hon Aupito William Sio
Minister for Pacific Peoples

Government supports Pacific-led solutions with STEM and Community COVID-19 Fund

The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says the availability of funding support for targeted Pacific-led solutions demonstrates the Government’s commitment to invest in Pacific people designing, leading and driving the recovery and rebuild of Pacific communities hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Pacific communities can now apply for the additional funds Budget 2020 provided including the increased funding of $4.9 million over two years for the Toloa STEM Programme that targets increasing community participation, and a $3 million Community COVID-19 Fund over two years that targets supporting churches and volunteer groups to develop plans for the economic recovery and rebuild of Pacific families.

“I have impressed upon Pacific groups during my nationwide online talanoa sessions that the Government will support Pacific peoples to develop their community plans and strategies for their economic recovery and rebuild, and these grants will assist with that.

“It’s critical that we ensure Pacific peoples don’t miss out on the business, employment, educational and home ownership opportunities, and for all young people to seize the opportunities the digital economy offers, but Pacific peoples must take the lead in this.

“I want Pacific communities to collectively embrace STEM career pathways as the key that will open up doors for more prosperous and thriving Pacific families, and we’ll be looking to introduce the Arts into the Toloa STEM programme which will make it fun, create more innovation, and increase participation.

“The Toloa Community Fund will provide grants of up to $50,000 to support organisations and community groups deliver grassroots, emerging and collaboration STEM initiatives that will help grow the number of Pacific people’s pursuing careers in these fields.

The Toloa Kenese Fund will support STEM providers to deliver targeted Pacific programmes and workshops with primary, intermediate, and secondary school students and their parents.

“The Community COVID-19 fund will also provide targeted support with grants of up to $50,000 for Pacific groups who are leading and driving their own solutions to respond and recover from the impacts of COVID-19.

Applications are currently open and will close on the 28 August 2020 at 12pm.

For further information and how to apply for these three funds, visit the Ministry for Pacific People’s website.

“These investments provide Pacific groups with the opportunity to lead their own Pacific rebuild in Aotearoa by receiving support for the practical solutions that lift Pacific wellbeing and can lead to thriving and prosperous Pacific communities,” says Aupito William Sio.

Toloa Community Fund

Pacific organisations which work with Pacific communities are encouraged to apply for funding to deliver STEM related activities. Funding options available are:

Grassroots Initiatives (grants up to $5000): This fund is for groups who have a new idea that they want to test and pilot;

Emerging initiatives (grants up to $20,000): This fund is for groups who have already tested ideas and have shown some good results in their own community. Funding requested under this category could be used to improve or scale up an idea;

Collaboration Initiatives (grants up to $50,000): This fund is for groups who have already tested ideas and have shown some good results in their community, and may look to collaborate with other community groups to improve or scale up an idea for the region, or across several regions or nationwide.

Further information here

Toloa Kenese Fund

• The Toloa Kenese Fund will support (STEM) providers with grants up to $50,000 to deliver targeted Pacific programmes and workshops with primary, intermediate, and secondary schools, students, and parents to create opportunities for engagement to raise awareness and increase Pacific uptake of STEM subjects.

• Initiatives or activities that is creative, innovative, have high impact and will lift STEM aspirations amongst our Pacific communities.

Further Information here

Community COVID-19 Fund

Under the Community COVID-19 Fund, Pacific groups can apply under the three categories below:

Grassroots Initiatives (grants up to $5,000): This is funding available for groups which have a new idea they want to test and pilot;

Acceleration Initiatives (grants up to $10,000): This funding is for an initiative which has already had a positive impact in the community, and you would like to improve it;

Lift off Initiatives (grants up to $50,000): This is funding for an initiative which has already had a positive impact in the community and you would like to collaborate with others to scale up or expand to deliver in other regions.

Further information here

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