Rotary Club of Wellington supporting social enterprise through Kick-Start Award 2018

The Rotary Club of Wellington and the Ākina Foundation have joined forces for a fourth year to kick-start social enterprises in the Wellington region by providing $10,000 in cash to promising start-ups.

Ākina Foundation Chief Executive Louise Aitken welcomed the return.

“We are very grateful to The Rotary Club of Wellington for their support again this year. It is often a challenge for young social enterprises to find seed funding and this Kick-Start Award has been integral to enable great ideas to get off the ground. This will ultimately translate into greater social and environmental outcomes within our communities.”

Rotary is providing up to $7,000 for the top venture with the remainder awarded to closely followed contenders.

In 2017, the winning venture was Zeal Education. They operate youth centres around Aotearoa to impact young New Zealanders through creativity, thanks to after-school hangouts, events, creative programmes, workshops, online crisis intervention and more.

“We are extremely thankful for receiving the Rotary Kickstart Award. It means a lot for us to have the backing and support of The Rotary Club of Wellington and Ākina, who are working together to raise the profile of social enterprise in Aotearoa New Zealand. The money we received was integral to starting our project, and since then, we have brought in a customer base, set up our studio, and have taught and mentored 18 young people in design.”

   – Wellington Manager Jenna Harris

Check out Zeal’s entry video below or by clicking here.

Rotary Club of Wellington can help strengthen social entrepreneurship by building capability and connections. Members have provided specialist services like finance and governance to a range of start-up social enterprises, with some members joining advisory boards. For other early stage ventures, even a simple coffee and chat with club members has helped clarify thinking and broaden perspectives.

Applications for the Rotary Club of Wellington Social Enterprise Kick-start are now open here and close at midnight on 2 September. The winner will be announced at a Rotary event on Monday 29 October, after a presentation of the shortlisted videos and a vote by Rotary members.

To qualify for the kick-start, applicants must be resident in the Wellington region although their project may have a local, national or global impact. Applicants are required to submit a three-minute video along with a short online application form.

We’re hosting an info session at 5pm on Tuesday 7th August at Ākina to help you produce a winning application. This is a chance to learn more about the judging criteria and ask questions of the selection panel. Click here to book a space on Tuesday 7th August.