Foundation North has launched a $5 million innovation fund that aims to find solutions to complex environmental issues facing the Hauraki Gulf.
Gulf Innovation Fund.Together (GIF.T) will support innovative responses to environmental challenges in the gulf over five years of focused grant making. Grants will be available to support projects from prototyping to implementation.
“The Hauraki Gulf is a major asset for all Aucklanders,” Foundation North CEO Jennifer Gill says in a media release. “But we know that the Gulf’s environment is under pressure which is contributing to the degradation of both land and sea. We are looking to promote new thinking and collaboration to generate action and responses to turn the tide.”
Foundation North holds in trust for the Auckland and Northland communities an endowment, or putea, of over a billion dollars. This comes from the sale of the community’s shares in what was previously the Auckland Savings Bank. That endowment allows it to make millions of dollars in grants each year to not-for-profit groups in Auckland and Northland.
It has a long history of supporting conservation projects and the new innovation fund builds on the collaborations and conservation work already happening in the Gulf.
An innovation lab will be held on the September 14 where individuals and groups can turn ideas into prototypes. Following the lab, ideas with strong potential will be apply to access a small grant to enable first stage prototyping.
“It’s a breakthrough fund that we’re really excited to launch,” project manager Kim Collins says.
“We want to engage a wide range of people who can make a difference to our region. We believe someone out there has a creative solution to improving the gift of this gulf, and we’re very keen to work with them.”
To learn more about the fund and register for the innovation lab, see Gift of the Gulf page here on our website.