Environmental Leaders Fund

The Environmental Leaders Fund (ELF) aims to support schools and early childhood centres with projects that increase their students' knowledge and passion for the environment. As we respond and adapt to a changing climate, these projects will help to build climate resilience in our schools and surrounding communities.

Applications for 2023 closed Wednesday 27 September.

When preparing for next year's application, you'll need to have:

  • details of your project
  • breakdown of the funding requested
  • answers to the criteria questions

The full ‘entry criteria’ will be available when applications for 2024 open.

What kind of project is more likely to succeed?

The Environmental Leader's Fund has changed and now has an increased focus on climate action. We are looking for applications for projects that fall into one or more of the following criteria:

  • Improving biodiversity
  • Processing waste onsite
  • Growing Kai
  • Exploring alternative energy and reducing emissions
  • Protecting and preserving water

What about funding for traps and pest control?

If you interested in funding and support for traps and pest control in your school and surrounding communities, please contact our Biosecurity Partnership team directly – [email protected] or 0800 002 004 as funding for traps isn’t included in our criteria this year.

Do all applications receive funding?

We only have limited funding available, so we cannot guarantee all applications will be successful.

How much funding is available?

We have a limit of $3000 available per project, as well as an overall limit for the Environmental Leaders Fund.

How will my project be judged?

The entry criteria document with detailed information on the judging criteria will be available when applications open in 2024.

Can my school / centre submit more than one application?

No, only one application will be accepted per school / centre.

Are the projects limited to 'within the school /centre gates'?

No, we encourage you to work with community groups in your local area.

What happens after I make an application - 2023?

Applicants will be advised of funding decisions in October. Funding will be processed on receipt of an official invoice, which must be from the school / centre awarded the funding.

We will contact you to follow up on how your application is progressing, and we require a project completion report from all successful projects by 31 December 2024.

Important dates

  • 21 Aug 2023 - Applications open
  • 27 Sep 2023 - Applications close
  • 01 Nov 2023 - Invoices received from successful school
  • Dec 2024 – Project completion
  • 31 Dec 2024 - Report received documenting project

Need help?

The Environmental Leaders Fund Team
E: [email protected] | P: 0800 002 004