RUIA Fund, an innovative programme designed to support rangatahi create their own wellbeing initiatives has opened its
second round of funding.
“We are encouraging rangatahi from all over Te Waipounamu, Chatham Islands and Stewart Island to be brave, be creative
and innovative and put forward your ideas. RUIA is about rangatahi for rangatahi by rangatahi,” RUIA Fund Coordinator,
Hora-Kairangi Nicholas said.
“We are looking for great ideas that support rangatahi wellbeing, intergenerational leadership, succession planning,
cultural development and the ability for all rangatahi to access initiatives that support them to grow and develop.
“As a team we have set up the framework and brought the funders together – the rest is up to rangatahi. A decision panel
of five rangatahi decide which initiatives receive the funding and how much,” said Nicholas.
The fund was launched in October last year and attracted 32 proposals from applicants aged between 12 and 24 years old.
Of those,16 initiatives were supported to develop their ideas.
“The massive disruption caused by COVID-19 has meant most of the initiatives have had to alter or delay their plans, at
least one has been able to pivot and develop an online solution,” Nicholas said.
“The positive aspect is that we are now beginning to regain some momentum and are looking forward to a new crop of
innovative ideas from rangatahi in this second funding round. Applications are open from 1 – 31 August.
Te Pae Māhuri received funding last year and is a Dunedin based group of rangatahi numbering more than 20 which has
organised itself into what coordinator Kiringāua Cassidy (Ngāi Tahu) describes as a ‘rangatahi council’.
COVID-19 hit at a time when their first event was being organised; a fun competition open to the public which involved
making the biggest splash by jumping off a local wharf.
“It was a Manu Comp open to all rangatahi, to see who can do the best bombs, judged on size and style. It was to be a
fun way to bring us rangatahi together through whanaungatanga, meet new people and strengthen our bonds, before focusing
on more serious mahi,” said Kiringāua.
One of the more serious kaupapa of Te Pae Māhuri is plans to create informative videos about local Māori place names
that helps people to pronounce them properly and educates them about the origins and significance of the names.
“It came from local place names like Ōpoho and Taiari being continually mispronounced. These are our place names that
people mispronounce every day, we want to spread awareness about respecting te reo and pronouncing these names properly.
“Now we are moving back into normal life we will begin to hui again and get these initiatives back underway and start
developing new ideas,” said Kiringāua.
RUIA Fund is a partnership between Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu (South Island Whānau Ora Commissioning Agency), Rātā
Foundation and the Ministry of Youth Development, which brings their individual rangatahi funding streams under one
umbrella to make them easier to access.
“Ruia is founded on the principle that rangatahi should be part of the decision-making process with anything regarding
rangatahi wellbeing. We will accept applications from rangatahi, whānau, groups and organisations that require funding
to make their ideas and/or initiatives for rangatahi Māori age 12-24 years become a reality.
All applications should respond to at least one of Ngā Pou o RUIA (the RUIA principles):Whānau Ora – Wellbeing in the context of whānauTe Ao Māori – culture and IdentityMana-Tangata – leadership and self determinationWānanga – learning, connectivity, participationAuahatanga – innovation and enterpriseTe Ao Tūroa – mahinga kai, natural environment and sustainabilityTe Pūtake – strengthening capability and responsiveness