A camp for children with Tourette Syndrome and a world dance tour were among 40 recipients across the country that benefitted from the Mazda Foundation’s latest round of funding.
Almost $118,000 was gifted to kiwis, communities and charities supporting arts and culture, education, and the environment – the largest funding round since its inception in 2005.
The Tourette’s Association of New Zealand, founded by Christchurch mum, Robyn Twemlow, received $10,000 to help fund Camp Twitch for a second year.
Tics are welcomed at Camp Twitch, which brings together young people with Tourette Syndrome from across New Zealand and their families for a week of fun.
Robyn says the funding will reduce financial stress on families and allow young people from many different walks of life to attend the camp and embrace their condition.
“Camp Twitch is an environment where kids are encouraged to tic loud and proud,” she says.
“It’s amazing to see them build their self-esteem and take ownership over their disorder. It also provides opportunity for parents to share their experiences of raising a child with Tourette Syndrome – so it’s an empowering experience for all involved.”
Seventeen-year-old aspiring dancer, Tamera Matene, has been given the opportunity to travel to the United States and learn from some of the world’s best choreographers.
The Stratford teen received $6,589 to help fund her attendance at the World Class Dance Tour of New York and Orlando, where she will develop her skills, attend workshops and experience the New York Broadway scene.
Tamera says the opportunity is life-changing and will bring her one step closer to pursuing a career in dance and the creative arts.
“Dancing has always been my biggest passion, but it wasn’t a realistic career choice. I’m so excited to get to meet industry professionals, learn from some of the best in the business and get a little closer to pursuing it as a career – it really is a dream come true,” she says.
In Blenheim, Jane Peoples received $4,000 to support her friend Milly with the cost of private speech lessons for her autistic son.
Milly has three young boys, two of whom are autistic. Seven-year-old Harvey has shown tremendous progress since he began speech lessons, and the ongoing therapy will help him to continue to develop his social skills, build friendships and increase his confidence.
Each year the Mazda Foundation hosts three funding rounds to help Kiwis in need, having gifted over $3 million back to the community since its inception in 2005.
David Hodge, Managing Director of Mazda New Zealand and Chairman of the Mazda Foundation says Mazda isproud of its continuoussupport of Kiwis, communities and charities across the country.
“There are thousands of incredible causes acrossNew Zealand, and we’re proud of the work the Mazda Foundation does to support some of the caring Kiwis that are doing commendable work for our environment, our community and people in need,” he says.
The Mazda Foundation is funded through a contribution from the sale of every new Mazda in New Zealand. For information on other recipients visit http://mazdafoundation.org.nz/grant-recipients.
The closing date for the next round of Mazda Foundation applications is 30 September 2018. For more information or to download an application form, visit www.mazdafoundation.org.nz.