Creative Communities Scheme

Looking for funding for your next community arts project? Maybe the Creative Communities Scheme can help. 

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

The total fund pool for 2023-24 is $111,045, made up of a $36,093 Council contribution, $68,220 from Creative NZ, and $6,732 carried forward from last year. In the last financial year we supported 35 projects, and the average grant awarded was around $3k.

How to apply

This scheme has 2 funding rounds each financial year. Round 2 will open in February 2024. In the meantime, you can get in touch with us to discuss your options and find out if this is the right fund for you.

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.

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 2022-23 round 1

We’ve allocated $46,974 to 14 arts event and projects. The successful applicants are listed below. 

Rachel Lenart: Swimming Lessons, $9,210

A new play about the joy and fear in facing neurodivergence and trauma (but in a fun way) by Lizzie Tollemache. Directed by Rachel Lenart with Lizzie Tollemache, Carrie Green, Eve Gordan, Bek Coogan and Kim Garrett.

Alliance Francaise Palmerston North Incorporated: Digital November - Machine à bulles, $5,000

"Machine à bulles" will showcase digital 24 pieces of comic art at the Square Edge Gallery. Visitors will be able to access and experience the artworks with a QR code, VR experiences, digital art & animation workshops, and an animation movie.

Legacy Centre: Community Dance Academy, $3,300

The Community Dance Academy will create opportunities for young people between 8-13 years of age to experience performing arts, specifically Hip-hop and Contemporary dance.

Taranaki Arts Trail: Artists Exchange Project, $2,600

The Manawatū Arts Trail will exchange two artists with the Taranaki Arts Trail for the local arts trail weekend. This will build relationships, contacts and showcase the talent from a neighbouring region.

Tall Poppies Performance Community Trust: Guardians of the Palace, $2,130

This production is based around the guardians of four different palaces who are called in to solve the mystery of who it might be attempting to overthrow the King and Queen of each palace. It involves eighty junior members of the Manawatū Community and will feature two nights at The Globe in late November.

Environment Network Manawatū: Environment linked mural for ENM office building, $5,000

A large mural will be painted on the ride of the Environment Network Manawatū Building to raise awareness of their kaupapa, focus, member groups, and to celebrate the unique environmental heritage of the Manawatū catchment.

Rose Bourke: Alleycat, $2,500

A window gallery space down the Broadway & King Street alleyway that showcases Manawatū artists.

KidzStuff Theatre For Children Incorporated: Mr Fungus, $2,500

The iconic Mr Fungus brings his upbeat physical comedy show to town.

Jane Ross: Film Talks at the Globe, $2,000

Film Talks with Derrick Sims, Phil Stebbing, Eli Hill and Jason Ellis.

Benjamin Tipene: Way to Write, $2,500

Group workshops to teach people the skills to write songs as a form of expression and mindfulness.

Te Aroha Noa Community Services: Making Highbury and Arts Suburb- Footpath Mural, $4,534

Te Aroha Noa has a dream of seeing Highbury transform into more of an 'Iconic Arts Suburb'. Their first project contributing to this dream is a community footpath mural that stretches the length of the Te Aroha Noa buildings.

Emma Maguire: Shift Your Paradigm, $2,224

Shift Your Paradigm is a satirical theatre show. It’s an hour-long, chaotic comedy created by Mitchell Botting and David Bowers-Mason for NZ Fringe 2022 and produced by Emma Maguire.

Ngā Wairua Toi - Creative Souls: Collective Story of the 12 Days of Christmas, $1,475

The project involves a group of new and amateur artists working together towards a collective project and 'walkthrough' exhibit in December. The exhibit will capture the12 days of Christmas through a series of static art pieces, open to the public during the Christmas lights Spectacular in December 2022.

Successful applicants 2022-23 round 2

There were 21 successful applications for the second round of Creative Communities Scheme funding for 2022-23. Grants ranged from $600 to $8,500. We allocated $61,212.38 in total.

Georgia Larkin-Tareha: Te Mahi Harakeke, $8,156.49

A 12-week, Noho-based Whatu Kakahu Wananga pilot programme. Wāhine will create kakahu maro from harakeke/muka. Through the practice of raranga, wāhine will learn whakapapa tikanga and kawa protecting cultural values, practices and taonga of toi Māori, while also providing an avenue for creative freedom that acknowledges and celebrates te ao Māori.

The Rebel Alliance: Back to Square One? $2,628

Solo show by Anders Falstie-Jensen at The Dark Room and workshop for Centrepoint Theatre’s Youth Company.

Little Green Man Productions: Wonderland Glow Show, $1,600

Glow-in-the-dark, giant-scale puppet show.

Paul Dunham: Click::RAND, $3,029

A series of up to 16 wall-mounted soundboards. An exhibition is to be presented in Square Edge.

Environment Network Manawatū: Rethinking Plastic – a call for change using disruptive art to challenge the plastic shadow we cast in our everyday lives, $3,000

A series of tamariki and rangitahi-led sculpture workshops leading to an exhibition at Square Edge. The sculpture created will be from plastic waste.

Bhutanese Society of New Zealand: Nepali book publishing and translation, $2,000

This solo book in the Nepali language tells the story of Bhutanese refugees from Bhutan to Nepal (refugee camp) and from the refugee camp to New Zealand. Through this book, people will gain a deeper understanding of Bhutanese and refugee life.

The KaRS Parsons/Taylor: The KaRs Christmas Album, $6,000

An album featuring a mix of original and classic Christmas songs in te reo Māori and English.

Unity Singers: Annual free community variety concert, $1,500

Unity Singers Choir free Community Variety Concert at the Regent Theatre.

Paula Harris: Sectioning Herakles – a korowai pūoro & film, $4,500

The creation of music and film to wrap around and support the release of Paula Harris' poetry book Sectioning Herakles.

The CanInspire Charitable Trust: Film talks at the Globe, $600

Creative therapy beading workshops in Palmerston North for people experiencing illness, trauma or loss.

Legacy Centre: Community Dance Academy, $1,000

Hip-hop and contemporary dance for 8-to-13-year-olds. Community Dance Academy is now known as Dynasty Dance.

Life, Love, and Lenses Ltd: The School of Film, $8,500

A filmmaking programme for future filmmakers aged 10 to 18, in collaboration with the Globe Theatre.

Multiple Sclerosis Central District: MS Central Districts art group, $1,500

The exhibition Landscapes of the Mind challenges perspectives around MS and individuality and what they can do.

Manawatū Writers' Hub: Publish an anthology of writing, $1,516

Prepare, produce, and publish an anthology of writing (poetry, short stories, essays, etc.) by Writers’ Hub group members.

Amy Atkins: RAW! ASMR & clown workshops, $2,082

Perform ASMR show RAW! ASMR at Globe Theatre and run two introductory clowning workshops for local schools.

Andy Dolling: A Great Raw, $1,000

Theatrical debate about the greatness of war. Followed by a community theatre workshop, Theatre of Liberation, to encourage local citizens to connect through storytelling.

Manawatū Youth Orchestra Inc: Manawatū Youth Orchestra and Sinfonia combined concert, $2,850

A concert of orchestral music featuring the Manawatū Youth Orchestra and Manawatū Sinfonia.

Elizabeth Hodgson: Cookies and Cream, $4,500

A short film written and directed by Palmerston North filmmaker Arka Gupta and produced by Elizabeth Hodgson.

Sabados Teatreros: Sabados Teatreros 2023 – Don Quixote, $2,750

Sabados Teatreros is a drama education program for Spanish-speaking children aged from 5 to 15-years-old.

Gavin Ralph: Poison at Penshaw Hall, $1,000

Poison at Penshaw Hall is a cosy murder mystery novel and sequel to the published Murder on Milverton Square.

Tania Kopytko: Celebrating Women in Performance (working title), $1,500

This concert at the Globe will use dance, story-telling, theatre and music to explore the different roles and aspirations women have in art and in wider society.