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Funding boost for Auckland age-friendly projects

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Three Auckland projects have received funding in the latest round of the Community Connects grants.

Community Connects grants help fund projects that promote the inclusion and contribution of older people in community life, and support their community to prepare for an ageing population.

The fund makes one-off grants up to $15,000.

Chinese New Settlers Services Trust, HBH Senior Living, and Toa Pacific received grants in the April funding round.

Chinese New Settlers Services Trust (CNSST) received $15,000 to carry out targeted consultations with Chinese communities in Auckland to help develop an age-friendly action plan.

HBH Senior Living received $10,000 to develop a virtual-village model to build an age-friendly community for the seniors of Howick and surrounding areas.

Toa Pacific received $10,000 to facilitate an introduction to older Pacific people engaging and connecting with a range of age-friendly community-led and council activities, to help reduce social isolation and loneliness.

Toa Pacific CEO, Malia Hamani, said the grant would allow them to connect with vulnerable older people who may live on their own or are home by themselves during the day.

"This is an opportunity for older people to meet and have fellowship with other peers where they can share, connect and engage in their own Pacific language," she said. 

CNSST Executive Director Jenny Wang said with the support from the Office for

Seniors it would lead a regional Age-Friendly Asian Community consultation over the next year to develop an evidence-based action plan.

"We’re aiming to promote age-friendly positive social changes and to create an age-friendly Asian community that provides responsive and active ageing activities," she said.

HBH Senior Living CEO Bonnie Robinson said they were delighted to receive support to further develop Virtual Village East.

"As our population gets older, Virtual Village East offers an alternative to moving to a retirement village or assisted living facility," she said.

"Seniors who wish to live in their own home, or can’t afford to move, are supported to live well at home through a network of friendship and support. The grant from the

Office for Seniors means this new initiative can be developed to the next stage and become a reality for seniors living in Howick and the surrounding areas."

Office for Seniors Director, Diane Turner, said the successful projects would help communities get ready for an ageing population.

"We know that across the world, our population is getting older," she said.

"With the right planning and support, we can create environments where older people are valued, connected and able to participate in their community.

"These projects will help us achieve that and make sure our communities are age-friendly for everyone."

For more information on Community Connects, go to

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