Nau Mai, Haere Mai.

Curious times indeed. Like everyone else, we've been busy resetting our plans. So some updates below, but we'll have more to share with you in the next couple of weeks.

Collaboration is the opportunity in our sudden new world

Kelvyn Eglinton, Momentum Waikato Chief Executive

Kia ora tatou everyone.

On behalf of Momentum Waikato, we hope you are all happily hanging in there, ‘together alone’, as we live and work our way through the Covid-19 lockdown.

We extend our heartfelt appreciation to the nurses and doctors, the carers, the cleaners, the supermarket staff and all the other frontline workers who are going hard out during these dislocated times, keeping our society and economy functioning. 

When stepping back from the daily reality of the lockdown and peering into the future, it is clear to me that our region and nation are going to have to do things differently when the post-Covid-19 environment dawns.

Read more.

New Chair and Trustees appointed

Neil Richardson has been appointed as the new Chair of Momentum Waikato, as of its February 2020 Board meeting. He has been a Trustee since the Community Foundation’s formation in May 2013 and its Deputy Chair since 2018.

And Alan Livingston and Leaupepe Rachel Karalus have filled the Trustee positions vacated by the departures of Leonard Gardner and Parekawhia Maclean, who stepped down in July 2019.

Read more.

Good time to check on the Waikato’s Vital Signs

Kelvyn writes...

Kia ora tatou everyone

I want to update you on the impact of the lockdown on Waikato Vital Signs 2020 and why it is still on.  

The project recently kicked off with the delivery of an evidential data report that measures the social, environmental, cultural and economic wellbeing of our region’s communities. Prepared by the National Institute for Demographic and Economic Assessment at The University of Waikato, it provides 36 different indicators across 10 theme areas, from the national level, to the region, through to the local council districts.

The latter half of this mission was to have been ten engagement workshops across those council territories, to present this data to local communities and their support sectors. A chance to discuss the findings, to ask what can be done to improve the lives behind them, and to amplify the numbers by gathering the stories and viewpoints of real people in real places.

The eventual goal is the Waikato Vital Signs 2020 Report, presenting the data alongside ‘flaxroots’ commentary and priorities, the second after the inaugural 2016 edition. Momentum Waikato and other local agencies will use this report to inform our impact investment and grant-making decisions, and to guide donors looking for philanthropic collaborations to drive transformational change.

Then the Covid-19 crisis derailed the workshop schedule, with all but two being cancelled – just Otorohanga and Te Kuiti went ahead.

Despite this, we still aim to produce this key report that joins the dots between the statistical information and what matters most to the people ‘living on the ground’.

We’re doing this by moving the Waikato Vital Signs engagement program fully online. In coming weeks views on the data will be sought from everyone via digital means, so the report can still be realised by the middle of the year.

I have been asked why we are pressing on with this given the uncertainty we all face. The advice and feedback I have been hearing says that, for many, the issues and opportunities identified and addressed by the Waikato Vital Signs project will be ‘front of mind’ during the current challenges. Home affordability, employment security, training, educational pathways, isolation and connectedness for vulnerable communities, and access to information - are even more relevant right now.

Being in our bubbles over the next few weeks is therefore a particular opportunity, a good moment in time, to reflect on how we can all work together into the future, to realise ‘A Better Waikato for Everyone, Forever’.

So, we are soon going to give you the chance to contribute - please look out for our upcoming notice promoting the online Waikato Vital Signs 2020 data map and survey.

Waahine Toa: Wisdom Shared was a huge success

The Waikato Women’s Fund’s Waahine Toa: Wisdom Shared event at The Atrium in Hamilton on Saturday 14 March was a huge success. A full report will be out soon, ahead of that see the many great photos by Mark Hamilton on the Waikato Womens Fund Facebook page (no login required to view).


Waikato Cultural Inclusion Fund focuses on its founding documents

A successful meeting of the supporters of the Waikato Cultural Inclusion Fund was held at Claudelands on Monday 2 March, attended by 20-odd people from a diverse range of organisations.

The intended goal was to start to form a standing committee, however the meeting agreed that that step should follow the wider group cementing the founding principles and intent of the project.

To progress this, feedback has since been sought from the Fund’s full informal membership on a skeleton draft Charter drawn up last year and the potential criteria for the committee’s membership. A working group of six is now due to meet remotely on Thursday 9 April to start to fully draft these documents.  

How long this will take will become apparent on that call, with the intent being that the papers will be back to the wider group as soon as possible. How things then play out after that is obviously contingent on how the lockdown situation unfolds - watch this space!

Momentum Waikato's response to the Covid-19 situation

Kia Ora to all Momentum Waikato supporters.

In case you missed this notice when first circulated, here's how we are responding to the Covid-19 situation.

As a member of the Waikato Funders Network, Momentum Waikato is looking to support core agencies and frontline services across the region by joining in on its coordinated efforts such as identifying gaps in provision and the proposed single application process for all local funders. This will amplify the role we already play ‘connecting and convening’ for people who need help and advice.

Specifically, Momentum Waikato has accelerated our new-ish partnership with the Wise Group at the Houchen Retreat in Glenview.

Read more.