MTLT Funding supports space science - Hadlow visit

Latest Trust grants help locals reach for the stars

Sep 2023

Community-owned Masterton Trust Lands Trust (MTLT) has invested in excess of a quarter of a million dollars in education and community initiatives to benefit locals in its latest funding round.

A recent funding recipient is Milky-Way Kiwi, receiving $8,000 to bring an immersive space exploration experience to Masterton schools.

Spaceward Bound NZ, a travelling space science programme, will bring the wonder of astroscience to Masterton students of all ages. A portable planetarium, virtual reality headsets, a solar telescope and a Mini Mars Rover will visit 11 schools in the Trust’s district. “All the kids have to do is look up!” says Milky-Way Kiwi Director Sam Leske who hopes to inspire future scientists. “We want to spark curiosity in our young people about space and science through STEM learning.”

Trust chair Christine Brewster is excited about the opportunities the space programme will bring to schools for students and teachers. “Having access to specialist equipment and knowledge about space science is not something smaller regions like Masterton usually have access to. It’s the sort of extraordinary educational opportunity the Trust was established to support, more than 150 years ago.”

Further Trust funding included a mix of scholarships for individuals, education-focused funding for non-school organisations and financial support for grassroots and impact community-led initiatives.

King Street Artworks received $7,550 for tutors to learn how to provide digital creation platforms. Improving accessibility has become more relevant for King Street clients who can’t participate in person due to distance, or, in some cases, anxiety.

Three community organisations – Masterton Foodbank, Waiwaste Food Rescue and Sustainable Wairarapa Inc – received funding towards salaries totalling $35,000.

Green-fingered initiatives received Trust support with $7,000 for a pilot composting scheme led by Wairarapa Community Centre Trust. A new garden shed to house tools for volunteers at Oxford Community Garden received $1,981.

Recreational pursuits for Masterton youth received a cash injection of $13,000. The funds will support Whakaoriori Air Scouts to attend the national jamboree at Mystery Creek, rock climbing instructor training for the Oasis Charitable Trust and safety work at Blair Street BMX track.

More information about the Trust’s grants can be found on the Trust’s website, or by phoning 06 370 0155.

Grants at a glance from 30 June 2023

Iwi/Pasifika Grants $20,000
Career Change Scholarships $6,000
Targeted Education Grants  $68,570
Community Grassroots Grants $13, 002
Community Impact Grants  $151,550
TOTAL $259,122