17 May 2012

Prime Minister visits Aranui music programme as Vodafone Foundation Canterbury Fund opens for applications

This afternoon, Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key will visit a unique seven-week after school music and circus skills programme run by the Muse Community Music Trust, at Wainoni School in Christchurch.

After losing its premises and much equipment in the February 2011 earthquake, the Muse successfully applied for funding from the Vodafone Foundation Canterbury Fund – a $4million fund jointly established by the Vodafone Foundation and Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust.

The Muse Trust manager, Nikki Berry says the $10,000 grant enabled the group to purchase new musical instruments and take the programme into new communities through a mobile resource centre.

"We are tremendously grateful for this funding which has enabled us to diversify our programme and bring innovative projects to earthquake damaged areas, especially the eastern suburbs," she says. "These instruments are ideal for people of all ages, and provide instant success, regardless of prior experience. We look forward to getting Christchurch rocking in a musical sort of way."

The Prime Minister's visit is a precursor to the Vodafone Foundation Canterbury Fund re-opening for funding applications later this month.

Grants ranging from $5,000 to $50,000 will be awarded to grassroots organisations in Canterbury with an emphasis on youth focused projects and capital/infrastructure projects.

Vodafone General Manager South Island, and Trust board member Jamie Cairns says many more community groups will benefit from the second round of funding.

"It has been so inspiring to meet many of the grassroots organisations in Canterbury who are doing incredible work to strengthen local communities, particularly those focused on young people. We've recognised the needs of these groups and in this round, we're pleased to have doubled the maximum grant from $25,000 to $50,000, which we think will really make a difference to local projects."

Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trustee, Dr Rod Carr says: "This Fund has already helped 48 grassroots organisations to make a positive difference in their communities following the earthquakes, and the Trustees are confident that the upcoming funding round will help even more. Our donors will be pleased to see their contribution making a difference for so many."

Applications will be open from 28 May to 6 July 2012 and can be made by visiting http://foundation.vodafone.co.nz/canterbury-fund/

Read the Prime Minister's media statement.