Auckland Mayoress Shan Inglis Len Brown

Asian charity gets mayoral funding

The youth wing of Shakti Legal Advocacy and Family Social Services has secured a funding of $32,000 from the Auckland Mayoress’ Fund for Youth. The fund makes grants from money raised from the annual Westpac Mayoress’ Charity Gala Ball.

The inaugural ball in November 2011 raised $170,000, and in its first grant today, the fund announced grants of $150,000. The remaining money is retained to grow the fund further.

Auckland Mayoress Shan Inglis Len Brown

With the new funding, Shakti will be able to support 16 – 21-year-old migrant women affected by family violence. This project aims to build self-esteem and help these young women reach their potential through a 12-week programme with the option of on-going mentor support if needed.

Shakti Legal Advocacy & Family Social Services (formerly the Shakti Migrant Resource Centre) has its origins in the Shakti Asian Women’s Support Group founded in 1995 by migrant women. The group set up the Shakti Migrant Resource Centre in the year 2000 with the objective of providing advocacy and settlement service for all migrants. The centre was reconstituted as Shakti Family Settlement & Social Services Inc. under the Shakti Community Council Inc. and has been recently renamed as Shakti Legal Advocacy & Family Social Services to include legal and counseling services. New Services include a Youth Unit.

Mayoress Shan Inglis says she is delighted that the inaugural grants from the independent charitable fund have been made.

“Money is tight for families, businesses and non-for-profit organisations, and it is important we support those out there in the community working so hard to improve the lives and futures of our young people.

An independent research and grants committee, reviewed 94 applications (requesting $2.6 million) to choose the four charities that received the funding. The other recipients of the inaugural grants are:

South Auckland Health Foundation: Kidz First Centre for Youth Health: $42,925 towards equipping the new purpose-designed Youth and Community Development Centre in Papatoetoe with facilities needed to deliver holistic youth healthcare and development services. It will benefit young people aged 12-20.

Te Waipuna Puawai Mercy Oasis: Young Dads’ Support: $30,000 towards connecting 18-24 year-old predominantly Maori and Pacific Island fathers to other dads, and supporting positive life-skills and decision-making for their wellbeing and for their children’s welfare. This ncludes parenting, training and employment skills.

McLaren Park Henderson South Community Initiative: Computer Clubhouse hub West: $37,230 towards supporting West Auckland’s first computer clubhouse. Computer Clubhouse is an international concept of a high-tech hub for young people to develop digital technology skills including ICT, music, digital design, robotics and videography. The project encourages young people to work together and focus on skills that can support future employment or enterprise.

As a mother and grandmother, Mayoress Shan Inglis believes in an Auckland where every child has the best possible start in life and a future to look forward too. New Zealand still has one of the highest rates of preventable illness and death for children in the OECD. More than 2000 young Aucklanders leave school each year without qualifications, and 15-19 year olds are the most over-represented group in unemployment statistics.

Auckland Mayor Len Brown says the recipients are examples of the important and innovate work being done in the community for Auckland’s young people.


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