General FAQ

What is the difference between philanthropy and charity?

Charity involves the gift of money or services to a cause, with the donor not seeking anything in return. Philanthropy is different, with donors anticipating a return on their investment by way of positive social or environmental outcomes. Those that receive funding remain accountable to donors and/or their representatives and their projects are measured against agreed objectives. Philanthropy also tends to focus on longer-term, large scale social investments.  Lao Tzu’s famous maxim helps clarify the difference – charity is when you give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Philanthropy is when you teach a man to fish enabling him to feed himself and others for a lifetime.

Why is it only education or environment projects?

Education and the environment have been chosen as the two categories for support and investment because the Foundation believes they have the greatest potential to inspire and sustain New Zealand for the future.

Eligibility FAQ

Can we contact the NEXT Foundation directly? 

As we do not accept applications from individuals, but from sponsor organisations, we ask that your first point of contact be through your research office, or the designated person from your organisation who is responsible for project proposals.

How can I find out if we have the right tax status?

The project you sponsor must either be part of, or eligible to be, a registered charity, under New Zealand law. This is possible to achieve if it meets charitable criteria.   Please see the Department of Internal Affairs here. If the project you sponsor is not yet registered, that will not disqualify it. However, the approval by the Board will be made conditional upon it being satisfied that the project is for charitable purposes.

Will the Foundation invest in projects that make a commercial return?

Yes, providing the project has the primary objective of benefiting New Zealand’s educational and environmental wellbeing for future generations.

What do we do if our project fits into more than one criterion? 

Tell us all about that. For example, see the website for the Rotoroa Island and Auckland Zoo project, and the Project Janszoon project. Essential parts of these projects started with conservation but also involve education, especially for school children.

Our organisation has many funding needs. What should we apply for? Can we submit multiple applications?

Before submitting an EOI, please make sure your organisation chooses its top three priority projects, in any one year. The priorities will be set through your chief executive.  Put your very best effort into those three.   Your organisation’s chief executive will need to sign your particular EOI, through a letter of endorsement, certifying that this process has been followed by the organisation.

I have a local project that only requires a small amount funding.  Can I apply?

Our focus is on supporting high impact, transformational projects that have the potential to make a meaningful, measurable and sustainable contribution to New Zealand society as a whole on a national scale.  While it is possible that a project that requires only a relatively small amount of funding will make a high impact, through innovative use of social media or technology for example, we only anticipate supporting between one to four projects per year, each receiving $3 – $15 million.   There are many wonderful charities in New Zealand supporting thousands of worthy causes, local and national.

My project is not education or environment related but I only require a small amount of funding. Can I apply?

We are focused only on projects that make a significant impact on educational and environmental outcomes. There are many wonderful charities in New Zealand supporting thousands of worthy causes and ventures, local and national, that distribute funds on a smaller scale than we envisage. Please visit Generosity New Zealand to explore alternative potential sources of funding.

If my application has been declined can I re-apply?

We expect that some EOIs will present very interesting ideas and concepts that are not yet sufficiently researched or understood, for an immediate progression into the RFP second step. The sponsors of these EOIs will be encouraged by NEXT Foundation to refine further the concept. NEXT may offer to provide assistance for such work to be undertaken.  If this is the case, the NEXT Foundation will be in touch with you directly.

What feedback can you give me on our organisation’s application?

NEXT intends to provide brief reasons to those EOI sponsors who are not successful.

Can we meet with the NEXT Foundation during the EOI assessment period?

No meetings are contemplated.

What should I do if my organisation’s circumstances or funding situation changes – for example if we secure funding from another source for the same activity as we have applied for?

You must tell us as soon as is reasonably practicable. This step will NOT disqualify you from consideration for NEXT support. NEXT actively seeks to promote partnership arrangements with other funding sources.

Reporting FAQ

Are there any obligations if a grant is awarded? 

Yes.  The project sponsor will be required to report the work progress to the relevant project board. That board will be required to monitor and report periodically the outputs or milestones achieved, to NEXT. These steps will be made part of NEXT’s funding agreement.