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Youth benefit from multiple CLT grants

Local tamariki and rangatahi will benefit most from the recent November grant round says Central Lakes Trust, Grants Manager, Mat Begg.

“Fifteen of the 21 grants approved by the board have a focus on assisting our rangatahi and tamariki in one way or another,” he says.

From driving skills to work placement programmes, double glazing for the Teviot Valley Educare, to an anti-bullying programme; investment in our youth was definitely at the forefront of this grants round.

The Central Otago Principals Association (COPA) referral programme received renewed support for the next three years. The programme; a CLT initiative dating back to 2006, funds assistance into all of the five secondary schools in our region. Considered extremely valuable it essentially provides additional resources for special education and in doing so, helps to minimise disruption to other students.

Mr Begg says, “Each school uses the funds differently depending on the year group and their needs. But often it is used in the form of a teacher aide. While some students benefit directly, all students in the class gain from having additional support as this frees up the teacher.”

The programme was considered by schools as even more relevant coming out of the Covid affected years.

Dunstan High School’s Nathan Love says, “I would not hesitate to endorse that COPA funding is even more relevant in the current education environment than may have been the case since its inception in 2006. Certainly, over the past 16 years, hundreds of students have benefited from COPA funding but without a doubt in 2022 secondary schools are enrolling more year nine and ten students who struggle with their learning.”

Roxburgh Area School’s Tania Miller says, “The funding is still extremely relevant in today’s environment. We have a significant number of students with very diverse learning needs. They do not qualify for Ministry funding but they still benefit hugely from one-on-one or small group assistance.

Youth further benefit from funding towards the Sticks n’ Stones anti bullying programme which operates within our region to empower young people to prevent bullying, and build resilience.

While Otago Secondary Sports Association receive $5,000 towards the programme costs of a Central Otago based events and competitions coordinator for the five high schools in the CLT area.

Funding was approved to support the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra who every second year tour the primary schools of Central Lakes providing an interactive introduction to classical music and orchestral instruments.

“This is a really good experience to be able to bring to the regions the tour is currently underway,” Begg says.

Twenty-one grants in total were approved by the board at the last meeting of the calendar year, totalling almost $800K bringing the grants approved for the financial year end 31 March 2023 to $7.95 million.

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