The first Mazda Foundation funding round for 2018 has seen almost $110,000 gifted to 36 appreciative recipients across the country – the largest number since its inception in 2005.
A new electric wheelchair attachment has changed Hasting’s resident, Sarah Hansen's life by allowing her to look after her mother who has dementia.
Sarah, who has Cerebral Palsy herself, is the primary caregiver for her mother and received $12,644.25 towards an attachment for her manual wheelchair.
She says the attachment allows her to use her smaller chair while travelling to and from her mother’s house and gives her more flexibility to assist with her mother’s needs.
"The grant has totally changed our lives. It means mum is now able to stay at home under my care, something that means a lot to us both. She has cared for me all my life and now I’m returning the favour," she says.
Wellington teenager, Jack Tetley has a passion for ocean conservation and received $8,500 to fund his attendance at the Trust for Sustainable Living 2018 International Schools Essay Competition and Debate in Seychelles.
The 13-year-old was the only Kiwi to receive honourable mention for his speech on ocean pollution, in which he educated fellow students about the changes they should be making to improve the world’s oceans.
Jack says his passion for the ocean came about when he saw the effects of ocean pollution in the Wellington Harbour Clean Up.
“I was shocked to see such large amounts of plastic and rubbish in our ocean and how it’s affecting the marine life in the area, so I decided I wanted to do something to make a difference.
“I’m so excited to go to the debate and learn more about conserving the world’s oceans, seas and marine resources. My dream is to educate people on the effects of ocean pollution and the Mazda Foundation grant is helping me get one step closer,” he says.
Share a Pair NZ was founded in 2017 by Palmerston North teen, Maddison McQueen-Davies, to help less fortunate families provide their children with decent school footwear.
Maddison relies on donations from students who no longer need or fit their school shoes, having already donated over 170 pairs to students in need.
The organisation received $2,000 from the Mazda Foundation to purchase a range of shoes to cater to students of different ages.
Each year the Foundation hosts three funding rounds to help Kiwis in need, having gifted almost $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 are thrilled to be able to help a such a wide range of deserving individuals and groups across New Zealand.
“Kiwis all over the country are dedicating their time to make a difference and I’m proud that the Mazda Foundation gets the opportunity to help them when it counts. We are delighted to support such a wide range of recipients, from education groups and conservation projects, to those doing their best to help others.”
“We were able to lend a hand to 36 incredible people and organisations this round and we hope to keep breaking records, providing support to as many New Zealanders as possible,” he says.
The Mazda Foundation is funded through a contribution from the sale of every new Mazda in New Zealand.