From the Momentum Waikato Annual Report 2022 - see full report in PDF.

The Waikato Women’s Fund exists to empower the region’s women and girls to realise their dreams and aspirations.

The Fund’s voluntary committee is achieving this vision by raising money to invest with Momentum Waikato and then making grants from the resulting income, through driving activities that showcase the power and beauty of women and girls and their communities.

Waikato Women's Fund members celebrate its fourth birthday, July 2022.

The Women’s Fund grant-making focus for 2021 was ‘Leadership and Wellbeing Resilience’. Following a robust nomination and voting process involving the Fund’s 100+ donating members in the second half of that year, grants of $5000 each were made to the Flourish Leadership Development for Ethnic Women programme run by the Hamilton Multicultural Services Trust, and Te Hinatore programme run by Anglican Action.  

Then 2022 was very busy as the Fund’s members got into the swing of the ‘new norm’ with work and business. The year started with seven new members joining the committee, as several of the original establishment committee members had completed their three-year term of voluntary service.

This new team came together for its inaugural strategy session at Trust Waikato in January 2022, a wonderful gathering of diverse and passionate waahine committed to collaborating on their shared ambitions for the Fund.

The decision was taken there to postpone the Fund’s annual signature fundraising event ‘Waahine Toa’, from its usual annual March timing to October, due to the ongoing Covid-19 uncertainties at the time around hosting large-scale events.

Meanwhile the new committee got busy coming up with fresh innovative ideas for engaging their membership, attracting new donors and driving additional funds.

The ‘Queens of Baking’ fundraiser was a hit, selling 112 boxes of local baking treats. The committee gave a huge thank you to the amazing local entrepreneurial women bakers from Sweeties by Dan, Cream Eatery and Layers by Ella Williamson for making the delicious treats.

Regular coffee networking sessions were also held through the year, with Fund members and other local women gathering to socialise and find out more about the Women’s Fund - the first was in May at the St Andrew’s Golf Club, with over 40 attending.

As everyone knows, the financial year ending 30 June 2022 was very challenging for the markets and the return-on-investment result for the Women’s Fund was consequently disappointing. Our five-year average return rate has historically been 9.6 per cent, so we continue to have confidence in our investment advisors and recognise that the 2022 result was due to the current state of the global economy.

Despite this, the Fund’s balance continued to grow due to new donating members and event fundraising, reaching $168,624 by the end of June 2022.

The committee offers particular thanks to Momentum Waikato, Volunteering Waikato and all those who have provided tangible support in 2021-2022.

The Waikato Women’s Fund is ambitious as it forges ahead, building its resources and capacity to support the women and girls of the region.

The call to action to all Waahine Toa of the Waikato is to support the Waikato Women’s Fund in whatever way you can – let’s share our stories and celebrate our goodness!