Ethnic communities (which includes different faith communities) will be able to plan and deliver more community initiatives – thanks to an increase in Government funding, Minister for Ethnic Communities Jenny Salesa announced today.

Ensuring Aotearoa New Zealand is a place that everyone can all be proud to call home has been a key priority of the Government, she said.

“As part of that we must ensure our ethnic communities are well-supported in their diverse and varied community activities. I am really pleased our Government is delivering this increased support for our community groups.

“This increase takes the Ethnic Communities Development Fund from $520,000 to $4.2 million each year, meaning we can support more of the community initiatives that help build a stronger, safer more connected and inclusive society.”

Aotearoa is home to over 200 ethnicities so the Government funding boost to support ethnic community initiatives should contribute to ensuring New Zealand is welcoming and inclusive for everyone.

Salesa said it will also help to ensure the country’s ethnic communities are more connected and have more opportunities to participate in, and contribute to, society.

“This fund has been utilised for ethnic community sport and youth initiatives, multicultural events, ethnic women’s centres, refugee and migrant services, and language initiatives, to name a few.”

“With this funding boost the priorities of the fund are expanding to support groups to do more work; including and welcoming ethnic diversity; promoting ethnic diversity and understanding.

“That includes educating New Zealanders about the contribution of ethnic communities; developing participation in employment and society; and supporting our ethnic communities to thrive through the practice and celebration of culture.”

From now on, the Fund will operate as a rolling fund, with applications assessed and decisions made throughout the year, rather than just once annually.

Eligible groups with initiatives that benefit ethnic communities in Aotearoa New Zealand can apply from 6 December 2019.

Information about the Fund is available on