Sport NZ Hillary Expeditions

11 June 2019

This funding has been redirected in to initiatives for young people to gain a life-long love of the outdoors.

For further enquiries please contact Colin Stone or 0274 451 339

Below is a list of potential funding sources available to individuals or groups seeking to undertake an expedition in New Zealand or overseas.

AMP Achiever Award

Aims to support talented Kiwis by encouraging and helping them to achieve their goals and do their thing.

Australian Geographic Society

Offers the Nancy Bird Walton sponsorship. Open to Australian women planning to undertake an adventurous pursuit. Annual funding of A$5000.

British Mountaineering Council

For those who have a British passport or will be climbing with a British citizen, you may benefit from a British Mountaineering Council grant. These are worth around British £400. Applications are accepted twice a year and the application form is on the website.

Directory of Potential Funding Sources

Provides a list of potential funding sources throughout New Zealand.

Film New Zealand

The Screen Production Grant funds eligible New Zealand feature films, television and other format screen productions deemed to have significant New Zealand content.


Offers creative individuals, groups and organisations the opportunity to raise funds through pre-selling tangible and intangible rewards by posting a project on Each project has a funding goal and a time limit (from 1 to 90 days) set by the project creator. During this time the project creator spreads the word about the idea to their fans, friends, family, strangers and sponsors. Supporters simply register and help fund the project.

Gaming Trusts

A number of gaming trusts may be able to provide assistance. Check out this list provided by the Department of Internal Affairs.

Hans Saari Memorial Fund Exploration Grant

Supports innovative ski mountaineering expeditions with technical goals in alpine terrain. Special consideration is given to expeditions to unclimbed, unexplored regions. Up to three grants are awarded per year. Applications are accepted once a year. The amount is US$15,000 and the application form is on the website.

International Polartec Challenge

Offered by Polartec (fabrics) this grant helps low-impact teams from around the world who support the spirit and practice of outdoor adventure. Grants are worth around US$5,000. Applications are accepted once a year and the application form is on the website.

Max Foundation

Supports women (or groups of women) whose actions enhance the wellbeing and advancement of New Zealand women. A new and exciting funding initiative is due to be announced in 2014. Go to the Max Foundation website to find out more.

Mazamas Expedition Grants

The goal of these grants is to develop the physical and mental abilities of climbers through expedition training. Mazamas is a club, but the organisation will support non-members for the possible contribution to the sport of climbing. The deadline is ongoing and the amount is variable. The application form is on the website.

Mt Everest Foundation (British Fund)

Available to British and New Zealand climbers who are attempting first ascents or new routes in the Greater Ranges, Alaska and South America. The expedition must have a strong exploratory component. After the expedition a preliminary report is required, followed by an intensive report within three months. The amount of the grants has gone up recently and can be as much as British £2,000. Applications are accepted twice a year.

National Geographic Expeditions Council Grant

Offered by National Geographic to fund exploration and adventure around the world. To get one of these you would have to put in a very strong application with a "compelling story". The deadline is ongoing and the amounts range from US$5,000 to $US35,000. The application form is on the website.

New Zealand Alpine Club

Available to anyone who is a member of the New Zealand Alpine Club and is looking to go on an overseas expedition. Applications are considered twice yearly. Grants range from $300 to $3,000. Ideas for choosing an objective can also be found at:

Nick Escourt Award

This award goes to one elite expedition every year and "expeditions to easily accessible areas or those with ill-defined objectives" are unlikely to be successful. It’s unlikely a New Zealand expedition will win this award any time in the near future, but there is no harm in putting in an application for the practice. The amounts are around British £1,000. Applications are accepted once a year and the application form is on the website.

Shipton/Tilman Grant

Offered by GORE-TEX brand as a tribute to Eric Shipton and Bill Tilman and the spirit of adventure they embodied. The grant provides US$30,000 per year to be divided amongst three to six expeditions from any part of the world who plan to accomplish their feat in a self-propelled environmentally sound way. Exploration and new routing is a big part of this award. Applications are accepted every 18 months. The application form is on the website.

Sony NZ Com

Sponsors groups and individuals who share their passion for enriching lives through excellence, creativity and innovation. Proposal for sponsorship must be aligned with "the Sony passion of bringing entertainment to all, through intense new experiences". The application form is on the website

Timmissartok Foundation

The Timmissartok Foundation will partially support projects that involve "travel with a purpose" in which a particular passion is explored. Applications are open to “individuals seeking adventure in foreign lands” – all nationalities and ages. Grant amounts are “small". Applications are accepted any time and the application form is on the website.

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