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Funding builds Pacific resilience against COVID-19

Funding builds Pacific resilience against COVID-19

  • 28 Mar 2022
  • |
  • COVID-19

Pacific communities in Aotearoa have been hit hard by the pandemic in the past two years in all aspects of life. 

While it has affected all New Zealanders, Pacific communities have often had to bear the brunt of COVID-19, due to being frontline workers, their home environment and pre-existing health conditions.

Acknowledging these factors and the need to support Pacific communities to prepare, respond and recover from the social and health impacts of the COVID-19 Omicron variant, the Ministry for Pacific Peoples (MPP) established the Pacific Aotearoa Community Outreach Fund – Omicron Response.

Project Sponsor for the Fund Tuaopepe Abba Fidow says throughout the pandemic, MPP has funded Pacific providers, community groups and churches to deliver numerous initiatives and interventions across the country to support Pacific communities with the impacts of the evolving COVID-19 environment.

“In 2020, $2.95 million and in 2021 $1.5million, a total of $4.45 million of funding was invested into Pacific communities through Pacific community groups, churches, providers and organisations,” Tuaopepe says.

“This funding was to assist in absorbing the impact of COVID outbreaks.”

The Ministry has extended funding after receiving part of the $18 million in Government funding for Pacific peoples, announced in February 2022, he adds.

“The newly announced funding focuses on responding to the impacts of the evolving COVID-19 environment, including Omicron, on Pacific communities as a part of the Government wider COVID-19 Response and Recovery plan.

“It means the Fund has been boosted to enable Pacific communities to absorb and adjust to the impacts of COVID-19.

“It also empowers our communities to embed and strengthen their own solutions, interventions and initiatives to build resilience and better respond to future impacts of the pandemic.”

Applications are now open for the Pacific Aotearoa Community Outreach Fund, with successful applications receiving funding to support initiatives that enable:

  • community groups to understand the COVID-19 Protection Framework
  • community groups to absorb and adapt to the evolving impacts COVID-19 and Omicron
  • digital readiness and training solutions
  • community groups or organisations delivering community readiness initiatives
  • community groups or organisations providing home isolation preparedness
  • increase social impact through social enterprise initiatives
  • innovative intervention and targeted solutions
  • targeted innovation and interventions targeted at disability, elderly and rainbow youth communities
  • innovation, initiatives, and solutions that demonstrate ability, capacity and capability to achieve national, regional and metropolitan reach and a wide range of impactful outcomes.

Applicants can apply by submitting a costed proposal of up to $100,000 using the online application form on the MPP website

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • be a citizen or permanent resident of New Zealand
  • be of Pacific descent, or serve a Pacific audience 
  • represent a registered group
  • represent a registered group with the Ministry for Pacific Peoples
  • represent a Pacific owned and operated group or organisation
  • be able to deliver an initiative targeted at Pacific communities within the timeframe and allocated funding.

Applications close on June 30, 2022. Visit HERE for more information, and to apply.