Central Lakes Trust invests in region's youth in latest funding round
Local tamariki and rangatahi will benefit most from the recent November grant round of the Central Lakes Trust (CLT).
In a media release announcing how funds have been divvied up, grants manager Mat Begg says 15 out of 21 grants approved by the board have a focus on assisting the region's young people in one way or another.
From driving skills to work placement programmes, double glazing for the Teviot Valley Educare, to an anti-bullying programme; investment in local youth was at the forefront of this grants round, he says.
The Central Otago Principals Association (COPA) referral programme received renewed support for the next three years.
The programme, a CLT initiative dating back to 2006, channels funds into all of the five secondary schools in the region, providing additional resources for special education.
Mr Begg says “Each school uses the funds differently depending on the year group and their needs. But often it is used in the form of a teacher aide. While some students benefit directly, all students in the class gain from having additional support as this frees up the teacher.”
The programme's proved even more relevant as schools emerge from Covid-affected years.
Dunstan High School’s Nathan Love says “I would not hesitate to endorse that COPA funding is even more relevant in the current education environment than may have been the case since its inception in 2006. Certainly, over the past 16 years, hundreds of students have benefited from COPA funding but, without a doubt, in 2022 secondary schools are enrolling more year nine and ten students who struggle with their learning.”
Roxburgh Area School’s Tania Miller says “The funding is still extremely relevant in today’s environment. We have a significant number of students with very diverse learning needs. They do not qualify for Ministry funding but they still benefit hugely from one-on-one or small group assistance."
There's also funding this round for the Sticks 'n Stones anti bullying programme, which operates within the region to empower young people to prevent bullying, and build resilience.
The Otago Secondary Sports Association receive $5,000 towards the programme costs of a Central Otago-based events and competitions coordinator for the five high schools in the CLT area.
Funding was also approved to support the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra, who every second year tour the primary schools of Central Lakes providing an interactive introduction to classical music and orchestral instruments.
“This is a really good experience to be able to bring to the regions - the tour is currently underway,” Mr Begg says.
Twenty-one grants in total were approved by the board at the last meeting of the calendar year, totalling almost $800,000 bringing the grants approved for the financial year ending March 31, 2023 to $7.95 million.