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Frequently asked questions on Tū Manawa

As at 24 August 2020

Frequently asked questions on Tū Manawa

As at 24 August 2020

What is Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa?

Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa is a Sport NZ fund managed by Regional Sports Trusts, with $16 million of funding allocated per annum to activate programmes and projects in their communities.

The fund enables organisations to provide quality experiences in play, active recreation and sport for tamariki (children aged 5-11) and rangatahi (young people aged 12-18), particularly those for whom barriers cause them to be less active.

What does Tū Manawa mean?

The meaning behind the words are tū - ‘to stand’ and manawa – ‘breath’. In the context of play, active recreation and sport the name calls to all New Zealanders to live our vision - Every Body Active.

Who is the Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa fund for?

We welcome applications from organisations whose primary purpose is to provide play, active recreation or sport opportunities for tamariki and rangatahi, or those who support that provision through the course of their operations. It will support not-for profits, community organisations, education institutions, regional and local councils, Hapū/Iwi/Marae organisations and for-profit entities.

Our research shows us there are some groups who are less active (very often due to financial barriers that mean they miss out on opportunities) so making sure they can benefit from this funding is a priority. These priority groups for 2020-2021 are:

  • Children and young people (5-18) in higher deprivation communities
  • Girls and young women (5-18) and disabled children and young people (5-18)
  • Young women aged 19-24 (in particular due to the impact of COVID-19)

Is the funding only available for Sport NZ’s priority groups?

No. The primary focus of the funding is organisations who are delivering projects and programmes that meet the needs of tamariki and rangatahi (children and young people). In year one we have an additional focus on those who are currently less active, often because financial barriers mean they miss out on opportunities to be active through play, active recreation or sport. We also want Tū Manawa to support the provision of opportunities for other population groups where the impact of Covid-19 is likely to have intensified existing inequities in the provision of opportunities, in particular for disabled tamariki and rangatahi, and for young women aged 19-24.

What do you mean by play and active recreation?

Sport NZ has working definitions of Play and Active Recreation as follows.


  • intrinsically motivated – it is spontaneous and will happen anywhere
  • personally directed – it has limited or no adult involvement
  • freely chosen – it has no predetermined outcome and is self-determined

Active Recreation:

Active recreation is the term Sport NZ uses to describe ‘non-competitive physical activity for the purpose of wellbeing and enjoyment’.

It includes activities that:

  • occur in built, landscaped and natural environments (including outdoor recreation, fitness/exercise, community recreation, aquatics)
  • are undertaken by individuals and by groups
  • occur with and without the involvement of a ‘provider’ group or organisation (i.e. can be undertaken independently)

Why has Sport NZ set up this fund?

Sport NZ’s response to COVID-19 has involved supporting the viability and sustainability of national, regional and local organisations that provide play, active recreation and sport opportunities to New Zealanders. As part of our sector recovery we will support the provision of physical activity opportunities for tamariki and rangatahi. By providing funding for these opportunities we will realise the well documented benefits to wellbeing and recovery in the post-COVID-19 environment.

How much money is being distributed?

The total amount available for distribution in 2020-2021 is $16 million. Each region has their own allocation from within this total – check your Regional Sports Trust’s website for further details.

What is different about this fund compared to the previous Kiwisport Regional Partnership Fund?

The Kiwisport Regional Partnership Fund has been in place since 2009 and ends on 31 December 2020. Please note the Kiwisport Direct Fund will continue to provide funding to schools as per usual, while Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa is a new fund with different criteria and an expanded focus; it is not an enhanced version of Kiwisport.
Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa will support a wider range of activity opportunities than Kiwisport (now including play and active recreation), it is more clearly pointed at those who are less active, and the organisations eligible to apply have been broadened in recognition of their critical role in providing these opportunities.

Tū Manawau Active Aotearoa is less focused on more people and opportunities, and more focused on quality experiences that will encourage participation for life. Where Kiwisport was a partnership fund that required additional revenue sources, Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa does not have this requirement. There is also a greater degree of standardisation in the application process than Kiwisport, while still supporting locally-led approaches that meet the needs of communities.

Why are Regional Sports Trusts distributing this fund?

The aim of this fund is to get money to grassroots organisations that provide opportunities to tamariki and rangatahi. The 14 Regional Sports Trusts have strong and deep networks within their regions, and existing platforms and systems to process applications and payments.

How much can I apply for?

Your Regional Sports Trust will establish processes for applying for the fund, including any maximum amounts. Higher value applications will need to provide more detail than lower value applications. In particular, many Regional Sports Trusts will operate a “fast fund” that has a lower application threshold and reduced administrative expectations. Check with your Regional Sports Trust to find out if they are offering this option and what level this is set at.

When do funding rounds open and close? Is it the same in each region?

While there is some national consistency (criteria, outcomes, eligible organisations, application processes etc) each region will establish funding rounds that work best for their community. You should check your Regional Sports Trust’s website for more information.

Does each region have to fund a mix of play, active recreation and sport opportunities?

Yes. We expect to see a broader range of play, active recreation and sport opportunities funded.

Can you provide examples of the types of organisations that can apply?

  • Hapū, Iwi, Marae, Māori organisations
  • Incorporated Societies
  • Clubs and societies
  • Churches
  • Charitable Trusts
  • Regional and Local Councils
  • For-profit organisations and social enterprises
  • Education settings – Primary/Intermediate schools/Kura, Secondary schools/Wharekura and Tertiary Education bodies/Wānanga

I run a business, can I apply?

We recognise that some businesses are well-placed to provide quality play, active recreation and sport opportunities. Check the eligibility diagram at to see if you can apply.

I’m from a school/kura, can I apply?

Yes. Sport NZ has developed a simple document that will provide guidance for schools and kura with any collaborative applications that use community providers inside their school setting – we recommend you consider this guidance document (located on your Regional Sports Trust’s website) before applying. Where the school is applying as the deliverer (i.e. the teacher is delivering the opportunity) there is no need to consider this extra step.

Can schools and kura apply for funding for sport or recreation coordinators?

Where applicants can demonstrate that a portion of the salary or wages of sports or recreation coordinators are part of the costs of providing activity opportunities to our priority groups, and these costs are not already covered by an employer or other funder, then yes. Schools and kura can’t simply apply for sport/recreation coordinator salaries or wages as these are covered by their employers.

Can community organisations apply for funding to deliver their activity in school time?

If your application is solely to deliver play, active recreation or sport opportunities before/after school or in breaks then yes, you can apply for support from this fund.

If delivery is to be within class time the application needs to be a joint one with the school and outside provider. The delivery of the curriculum and school plans is the responsibility of teachers and principals – they need to determine what activities they wish to run and when. Sport NZ has developed a support document, available through your Regional Sports Trust, that will assist this process.

My church runs sports and activity programmes for youth, can we apply?

Yes. We recognise that community organisations, such as churches, are well-placed to provide quality play, active recreation and sport opportunities.

Can I apply to the fund for equipment?

Only where the equipment is an integral and necessary part of the activity you are providing to tamariki and rangatahi. Applications for equipment only are unlikely to be considered as they do not meet the purpose of the fund. Capital items are not eligible for support – the fund would quickly be exhausted if they were.

Why can I only apply for funding for 12 months? I want to run my programme for at least two years to truly see the impact.

Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa is a new fund that will engage a broader range of community organisations, and fund new areas of activity, than has happened in the past. Sport NZ is viewing the first year of this fund as an opportunity to learn and reflect - a review of the criteria and eligible organisations will be completed before 30 June 2021 to inform the second year of funding, and things may change once we’ve seen how the new fund is working. So, at this stage only one year’s funding is assured.

Can we get help with completing the application form?

Yes. Please contact your Regional Sports Trust who will advise how they can help.

What if my programme includes parents and grandparents with the kids?

We recognise that the quality of the play, active recreation or sport experience for tamariki and rangatahi is often enhanced by the involvement of whānau/family – we will consider funding applications that engage them in the project or programme.

Have a question you need answered?

Please email either your Regional Sports Trust or Sport NZ at

If you require an accessible version of any content on the site please contact us and we will be happy to assist.

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