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Grants and Funding


​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Council provides funding for agencies and community groups for projects, activities and events in the community that help support our long-term goals for the district. These can be one-off events or ongoing projects that help make Ashburton district a better place to live, work and play.​

Our next round will open on the 1st of February 2022

Individuals and groups can apply for funding towards their art projects. This includes projects that relate to craft / object art, literature, visual arts, dance, music, film, theatre, Ngā toi Māori, and Pacific arts. The project can be in the form of an exhibition, performance, workshop or simply about creation. Applications for Round 2 open on the 1st of March 2022.

Creative Commuinities Scheme Application Guide

The heritage grant is for buildings or items scheduled in Group A or Group B of the Ashburton District Plan. The funding must be used for specialised maintenance such as replacing cladding or fittings that preserve or restore the heritage state of the building or item.

The grant is open twice a year; in February along with the other Community grants, and then again in August.

Heritage Grant Criteria

The biodiversity grant is for projects that aim to protect, maintain or restore biodiversity.

The grant is open twice a year; in February along with the other Community grants, and then again in August.

Biodiversity Grant Criteria

The events grant is to support new events and / or to build the capacity of existing events in the district. For an event to be eligible, the event must be smoke-free, promote sun-smart initiatives, and be working towards zero-waste.

Council funding can only be used for promoting the event, traffic management plans, and waste management measures.

Community Events Grant Criteria

Ashburton District has a number of independently operated community libraries throughout the district that play an integral role in residents’ quality of life. Community libraries provide local residents with resources related to information, education, economic regeneration, culture, diversity, and recreation in a public space that enhances their sense of place and belonging.

The purpose of the Community Library Grant Scheme is to support independently operated community libraries with the purchase and preservation of new reading material.

This Grant will open in February 2022

Ashburton District has a range of non-profit groups and organisations that play an integral role in resident’s quality of life through the projects and initiatives that they lead.

Council recognises the importance of community projects to the district and the shared responsibility it has with the community to ensure there are opportunities for community projects to advance. Council provides annual Community Project Grants through a single grant application process held in February of each financial year.

The purpose of the Community Project Grant Scheme is to assist projects that maintain and/or enhance residents’ quality of life in the Ashburton District.

This Grant will open in February 2022

How it works

​You are able to apply for funding from our Community Grants in February each year.

Once the applications are received, Council assesses the applications against the criteria and decides how the funding should be allocated to the grants as part of the Annual Plan. When the Annual Plan is adopted at the end of June, so too, are the grants. This means we will let you know by the beginning of July whether your application was successful or not, with the funds paid out by mid-July.

All projects and events need to occur between the following 1 July 2022 and 30 June 2023 period to be eligible – for example, you cannot apply in February for an event that is occurring in May that same year, it would need to be occurring post 1 July 2022.

We administer these two funds on behalf of Creative Communities New Zealand and Sport NZ respectively. You can apply for funding from these two funds in March each year. Creative Communities also has a second round in August of each year. For these two grants, if you are successful, you will receive the funds immediately following the committees’ decision. This will usually be 6-8 weeks following the application closing date.

Our grants

To be eligible, all projects and events must be located in the Ashburton District, be available to the wider community, and be organised or run by a non-profit organisation. Individuals can only apply for the Biodiversity and Heritage grants. Creative Communities Scheme also accepts individuals.

We only fund a maximum of 50% of the total project cost; however, voluntary contributions count towards the total – so make sure you explain these well.

Community will open for applications on 01 February 2022

Please see below for a brief description of each grant, eligibility criteria..

Sport & Recreation

We administer this grant on behalf of Sport New Zealand. Applications are open across the month of March.

The purpose of the fund is to help subsidise travel for junior teams participating in local sport competitions. Sports clubs and school teams with young people aged between 5 and 19 years can apply. Applications open on the 1st of March 2022.

Sport NZ Rural Travel Fund Criteria

Sport NZ - Application Form

If your project doesn’t fit our categories or criteria, or you are in need of more funding, givUS provides access to more than 1200 different grants for community organisations covering a wide range of project types from over 700 different funders across New Zealand.

Council provides free access to Generosity New Zealand's givUs database, a computer database of information about funding sources for community groups in New Zealand. You can access it at home through the library page of our website (requires membership login) or at the following locations:

  • Ashburton Public Library
  • Community House Mid Canterbury

Other financial assistance

Council may consider providing grant funding outside the schemes detailed above to assist with community projects considered to be of significant value to the Ashburton District community. These are dealt with on a case by case basis.

Council may consider requests for bridging finance or the guaranteeing of loans from community organisations undertaking projects of significant community benefit.

When applying you will need to include:

  • The project's contribution to the achievement of Council's community outcomes
  • The project's cost effectiveness
  • The reasons why other sources of funding are unavailable
  • Prudent fiscal history of the person or organisation making the application
  • The ability of the person / organisation applying to repay the loan(s)

Any applications will be analysed by a Council senior financial advisor and / or suitable advisor. The analysis may include the following:

  • The financial viability of the project
  • The financial position of the person / organisation making the application
  • Risks to Council in supporting the project and how these could be managed
  • Recommended compulsory conditions

Any bridging finance will be charged interest and any loans or guarantees Council provides may require a personal guarantee.

For further information on Council grants and funding, contact Council by email or phone (03) 307 7700.​

Report forms

All successful applicants are required to report back to Council on how the grant money was spent and whether the project/event was successful. Reporting forms need to be completed by 31 July, or before applying for further funding, whichever is earlier. See the links below for report forms.

If the funds have not been spent when the next funding round occurs and you would like to make another application, please complete the report form as much as possible, and let us know how and when you intend to spend the rest of the grant funds.

For the agency and sport development reporting forms, please contact

Type in keywords to filter the report forms