Ideas sought for vaccine encouragement projects
BayTrust are seeking ideas for innovative community projects to encourage more locals to get their Covid jabs – and are promising funding to help make it happen.
In an effort to boost the region’s overall vaccination rate, and help reach the Government’s 90 per cent target, BayTrust is looking to help fund suitable ideas and projects that will incentivize locals to roll up their sleeves.
“BayTrust has a core purpose to look after our Bay of Plenty communities,” explains BayTrust CEO Alastair Rhodes.
“The low vaccination rates currently seen in the Bay of Plenty are both a health risk to our communities and an economic risk. We may be left behind other regions with higher vaccination rates when activity starts to fully open up again.”
The BOP & Lakes regions’ current combined vaccination rate is -10 per cent below the national average of 78 per cent - the third lowest rate across New Zealand.
“Most importantly we want to keep communities safe and to protect whakapapa and whanau. We also know the Bay of Plenty region has areas in it that are already economically vulnerable, and low vaccinations rates will provide another barrier to economic recovery, particularly in the tourism, entertainment and events space.”
BayTrust has set aside a substantial amount of funding for Covid Response across the region and last year funded $0.5m to assist communities through, and to recover from, the lockdowns.
It now wants to hear from people and community groups who have fresh ideas, particularly ones that will encourage young people, rural residents and Māori to get vaccinated as their rates lag behind the general population.
“We want the ideas to come from the community. We don’t envisage using the money to fund the core health mechanism. But rather innovative and targeted projects that resonate with communities which will encourage more people to come forward and have a double dose to protect their health and their loved ones.”
BayTrust’s region extends from Katikati, to Turangi, to Te Kaha and includes the Eastern and Western Bay of Plenty and Rotorua and Taupō districts.
BayTrust’s mission is to accelerate bold meaningful change, helping BOP communities and the environment to flourish.
In the past financial year (ending March 31, 2021), BayTrust granted $6.3m to 172 different community organisations.
Anyone who has a project or idea to help boost the uptake of Covid jabs and spur the region towards 90 per cent vaccination, is asked to contact BayTrust staff for further information.