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Funding community art projects for connecting communities

Helping people raise funds for art projects has always bought me great joy and pleasure. With my work at Giblin Group I have helped bring to life places like the Len Lye Gallery and the Sargeant Gallery in Whanganui.

These were big projects, but the methodology for raising capital and helping fund projects is the same no matter how big or small your ask is. It’s about having a clear plan and ensuring a diversified income stream, and that’s where Funding HQ can help. The platform is designed to help community groups to access the funding they’d need to make a real difference and help build vibrant communities.

Focusing on connection

Staying well and connected has become even more important. One way we do this in our communities is through the arts. Public art spaces, museums, galleries, and exhibitions help people have a sense of caring and belonging in their communities.  

Communities will play a big part in our recovery from this pandemic. The arts will be an important lever to provide not only employment and economic growth but a sense of wellness and inclusion, bringing people of diverse backgrounds together to enjoy experiences and celebrate what makes our communities unique and different.

There’s been a fair amount of commentary around the powerful contribution the arts can make to our health and wellbeing. New Zealand is at the world’s leading-edge in the way it integrates ‘wellbeing’ as a priority for its work and funding strategy. When you think about what you do and what you want to achieve, it helps to think about how you contribute to wellbeing in your community. What are the benefits and outcomes you deliver to your community?

Ensuring a clear vision and plan

What is also clear is the need for community groups, artists and organisations to have a clear vision and plan. Whether it is for a new building, a creative design project or transforming cultural organisations into vital, cherished hubs you’ll need to know how to make a compelling case for investment focusing on what the outcomes will be for the community.

At Funding HQ we help you formulate a plan while looking also looking at the various funding streams that are available for your project. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Will your project create opportunities for local communities to engage with, and participate in local arts activities?
  • Will it support the artistic cultural traditions of local communities?
  • Will it create jobs for people in your community?
  • Will it help regenerate urban spaces?
  • Will it add to or complement the distinctive natural environment and built character in the community?
  • Will it attract people to the community?

If you feel your project answers some of the above questions have a look at Funding HQ and start building your compelling case for funding.

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Setting yourself up for sports funding victories this summer

If you’re in sports, you know that preparation is the key to an excellent performance. When it comes to winning the right funding, the approach is the same. It’s all about doing the work, building your skills, and getting a good game plan. And Funding HQ is on your side! Here’s what you can be doing in your off-season to make sure your team is ready to win on the funding front when the new season comes around.

Focus on reconnecting

Get in touch with your existing supporters and funders whenever you get a breather from competition. Covid-19 means this is more important than ever because so much has changed.

You might find the situation has changed for the better. Companies you’ve worked with in the past may now want their support of the local team to be more visible – sponsoring you could be an effective way for them to show they back their local community. Think about how you can help and start the conversation now.

Corporate sponsors may not be able to offer you the same support as they have in the past. Either way, they’ll still appreciate you reaching out and checking in. Care makes an impression. You want to be remembered for the right thing when the pace picks up again.

Plan to diversify away from gaming trusts

You should expect a reduction in any funding you’ve traditionally received from gaming trusts. Gaming trust funding has been slowly decreasing over the last few years and the lockdown has meant an even sharper decline as gaming income has been interrupted. Even if you’ve enjoyed a good relationship with specific gaming trusts in the past, there will be less money available from them for distribution for the time being.

During this off-season, you should look at how you can diversify your funding streams. Think about it as cross-training for your balance sheet! Start by considering what untapped channels are available to you.

The Funding HQ platform guides you through a ‘fitness’ test for funding diversification and uncovers new opportunities. We’ve built it specifically to help organisations like yours to help with the challenge of becoming more financially sustainable.

Update your plan

A rounded and well-executed game plan makes the difference to your game readiness in both sports and fundraising. Because so much has changed, now is the time to get creative.

To think ‘outside the box’ while also staying true to your identity, try starting with the vision and values of your organisation. Next, prioritise the needs you want to meet within your sports community. For example, you might decide the most important thing is to get your young elites to a national competition and inspire the generation that follows them. Alternatively, you may want to concentrate on attracting more first-time players to the game. Being able to express such goals clearly and share your aspirations will help cement the support you need. You might just need to adjust how you go about things until the pandemic and its effects have passed.

Creating a detailed plan in the off-season helps you in a couple of ways. Most importantly, you can make sure you have the right people and resources ready. You’ll also be able to capture all your victories – on and off the field – to report on to your funders.

Funding HQ has tools, templates, and techniques for each stage of your funding journey. In sports, a player has the best chance to excel when they have a strong team and a coach who puts their success first. In fundraising, you have Funding HQ to play this role.

We’ve created this Funding HQ because we know that sports bring together vibrant communities. We’re on your side, so let’s get you in good form.