Creative Communities Scheme

Looking for funding for your next community arts project? Maybe the Creative Communities Scheme can help. Applications are open until 4pm on Monday 29 August.

The scheme is a partnership between Council and Creative New Zealand that helps to fund local arts projects.

It has two funding rounds each year. The total fund pool for 2022-23 is $108,040, made up of a $34,506 Council contribution, and $62,056 from Creative NZ and $11,478 carried forward from last year. In the last financial year we supported 34 projects, and the average grant awarded was around $3k.  

Apply now

To get funding through the scheme, your arts project must do at least one of the following:

  • create opportunities for local communities to engage with and participate in arts activities
  • support the diverse arts and cultural traditions of local communities
  • enable and encourage under-18s to engage with the arts.

For examples, download the Creative Communities Scheme Application Guide.

Creative New Zealand has also published information brochures about the scheme, available in multiple languages on its website: Brochures and translations

Is your project eligible?

To be eligible for funding, your project must:

  • have an arts or cultural focus
  • take place within Palmerston North City Council boundaries
  • benefit local communities
  • not have started before an application for funding has been assessed
  • not have been funded by Creative New Zealand for the same purpose.

Come to a drop-in session to find out more

We're holding two drop-in sessions where you can talk to us in person:

  • Thursday 11 August, 12pm to 1pm at Square Edge
  • Tuesday 16 August, 5.30 to 6.30pm at the Evelyn Rawlins Room, Square Edge (please note new time and location)


See our events calendar for more details.

Covid-19 impact

If your funded event/project is delayed or cancelled due to Covid-19 restrictions, you have two choices:

  • Retain the funding and reschedule the event/project to be completed within the next year.
  • Alternatively, return the funding and reapply when you have the new plan. This may be a good option if you expect your costs to increase beyond the funding you have now.

Successful applicants 2021-22 round two

We've allocated $63,700 to 16 arts events and projects. The successful applicants are listed below.

Regan Taylor: Tama, $8,800

Tama is a keen 12-year-old kapa haka performer. Tama is also a 13ft (3.5 metre) tall articulated puppet, who’ll be performing alongside local primary school kapa haka groups in a series of free public performances.

Little Green Man Productions: Matariki Glow Show 2022, $1,613 

A Matariki glow-in-the-dark giant scale puppet show to celebrate, engage and ‘edu-tain’ tamariki aged 0-12 years of age.

Sábados Teatreros: 2022 school terms 2 to 4, $3,000

Sábados Teatreros is a drama education program for Spanish-speaking children in Palmerston North that runs weekly lessons for children aged 5-10 years old.

Arka Gupta: Dirty Dishes Film Production, $11,950

A short film written and directed by Palmerston North-based filmmaker Arka Gupta.

Renaissance Singers: Mozart Requiem, $1,300

A concert featuring Mozart's popular Requiem in conjunction with Schola Sacra, Whanganui, to be performed in St Peter's Palmerston North, and in Whanganui.

Graham Johnston: Peter Pan Jr, $5,000

A musical theatre production of Peter Pan Jr.

Sandra Douglas: The Road Not Taken, $3,000

An exhibition of 12 paintings. The idea is that what we don’t achieve can have as much of an effect on our futures as what we do achieve. 

Justin Ngai: Fourplays - A Collection of Black Comedies, $1,000

Justin is combining his award-winning and nominated short plays together for an hour and a half of black comedy. 

Kane Parsons: All the Right Notes, $3,000

To present a family concert of music and comedy in the style of Victor Borge with the Manawatū Sinfonia and Youth orchestra.

Elizabeth Hehir: Children’s story book about Manawatū legends, $10,000

Children’s story book about myths and legends of the Manawatū. The first story in a long-term plan of educational resources, this book will focus on the legend of Okatia.

NZ Choral Federation Inc. Manawatū-Whanganui Region: 2022 The Big Sing Manawatū-Whanganui, $3,097

A regional festival of singing by secondary school choirs as part of a national promotion by the New Zealand Choral Federation involving 12 regions across New Zealand.

Jane Ross: Film Talks with Christian Nicolson, $3,000

Auckland-based artist and film maker Christian Nicolson will do a community screening of his film This Giant Papier Mache Boulder Is Actually Really Heavy (2015), present an exhibition of his art at Square Edge, and a pop-up exhibition of his art in Te Marae o Hine - The Square.

Jon Bowen: Truly Made - A Decade of Groove Recording and Release, $4,600

Recording and producing original soul-funk music written by Palmerston North-based music collective Truly Made.

Kate Saunders: A Companion for a Bedside Vigil, $1,000

A collection of poetry relating the highs and lows of being a mother to a baby in the neonatal unit.

Pakistan New Zealand Friendship Association: Pakistan Arts and Crafts Exhibition, $2,000

Using Pakistan’s Arts & Crafts to connect with the wider society. The exhibition will showcase Pakistan’s diverse heritage, scenic landscape, and beautiful and vibrant handicrafts.

Tania Kopytko: Crows Feet Dance Collective Retrospective, $1,340

A performance of Crows Feet Retrospective featuring the work Wading into the Manawatū, supported by other Crows Feet collective works.