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Enhanced Access Grants
The New Zealand Walking Access Commission Ara Hīkoi Aotearoa provides New Zealanders with free, certain, enduring, and practical access to the outdoors. This includes access to and around the coast and lakes, along rivers, and to public resources.
The Commission offers Enhanced Access Grants to help individuals and organisations with projects that improve public access to the outdoors.
Since 2010, over 100 projects have been awarded an Enhanced Access Grant.
For the 2020-2021 funding round, $100,000 (excluding GST) is available for funding grants. The most we will allocate to a single project is $25,000. However, we also expect to support smaller projects.
The main priority for funding is obtaining certain and enduring public access to the outdoors.
Examples of this could include:
- the cost of negotiating secure access agreements
- legal or survey costs of obtaining access
- the cost of obtaining Resource Management Act consents
Other priorities, in descending order, are:
- providing access signage and other information, relating to public access
- developing and improving public access opportunities for the public, through installing gates, stiles and fences, or obtaining professional reports such as engineering reports
- supporting community walking access projects. This may include infrastructure and administration, but please note this funding is of lowest priority.
The Commission intends that funding is self-sustaining. This may limit our ability to please all applications.
You cannot use an Enhanced Access Grant for:
- activities that you could reasonably be expected to carry out on your own, or
- for personal or commercial profit.
We will not provide grants to pay for retrospective costs.
The following people can apply for an Enhanced Access Grant:
- iwi and hapū
- community organisations
- umbrella/lead organisations applying on behalf of local groups
- access-related groups or organisations
- administering authorities of walkways, and
- territorial authorities* in combination with community organisations
*Territorial authorities cannot apply for a grant on their own. They must apply in combination with a community organisation.
Central government agencies are not eligible.
We prefer applications that show evidence of partnerships. You should provide letters of support showing how each individual or group will contribute to the project. This might involve financial assistance, non-cash support or both. Non-cash support could include materials, sponsored business services and/or volunteer labour. Sometimes the local authority may be best placed to coordinate an application.
Applicants may seek funding for project work that requires up to 18 months to complete.
Please ensure you are ready to complete the work. Funding for successful applications will be held for up to 18 months, after which time it will expire. Extensions will only be granted in limited circumstances.
Please contact the regional field advisor in your area before you submit your application. This is the person who will be monitoring successful applications in your area.
To ensure we evaluate all applications fairly, you must use the application form provided. Please fill out all the required sections in the application form.
Your application should identify:
- how the project will benefit the community
- details of other funders, if any, and how much each funder will be contributing or has been asked to contribute.
- details of exactly what you would spend the grant on and when that expenditure would occur. For example, legal costs and survey costs should be specific and include details about what these services provide.
The application form requires you to declare the information you provide is true and correct.
In many instances you will need to provide supporting information such as:
- letters of support
- plans or drawings
- map references
If you are a registered charity, trust, incorporated or are required to prepare financial statements, please attach a set of your most recent financial statements with your application.
If you wish to claim GST, we will need evidence of GST registration.
We also welcome information about how you found out about the Enhanced Access Grants. This will assist us with future promotion.
Submitting your application
Applications are open year-round.
A signed application form must be sent by post. The application form may also be emailed but the original must also be posted. Any supporting documents may be either emailed or posted.
Do not bind or staple any application or documents sent by post.
Do not send multiple copies of your application.
We will acknowledge all applications when we receive them. Once we have your application and all required documentation, we will process it. At this point, we may contact you if we need more information.
Once your application has been processed, it will then be evaluated. We will consider the funding priorities and eligibility requirements listed above. We will also consider how projects could contribute to one or more of the following:
- providing free, certain, enduring and practical access for the public, and
- enhancing opportunities for outdoor access.
The Commission will also consider:
- the quality of the project plan
- the ability of the project team to complete the project, and
- the quality of the outcome.
The Commission reserves the right to:
- not grant all the amount set aside for the funding round, and/or
- offer a lesser amount than sought by the applicant, and/or
- not accept any application.
Once we have made a funding decision, we notify you in writing.
If your application succeeds, a legal agreement will be drawn up between you and the Commission.
This agreement will cover:
- project approval
- project details
- start and finish dates
- financial accountability
- periodic reporting requirements
- contact details
Funding will be available to successful applications across the duration of the project.
Once you have completed your project, we welcome feedback on the impact the project has had and your impression of our funding process.
Please contact us if you have any other questions or want clarification. We are happy to discuss a potential project with you before you invest effort in preparing an application.
For any procedural matters contact Joy Yang, Corporate Services Advisor | Te Kaitohutohu Ratonga Tangapū
If you have any other questions related to the Commission’s work, please contact us.