Creative Communities

The Creative Communities Scheme (CCS) provides funding to communities so New Zealanders can be involved in local arts activities.

The scheme supports a wide range of arts:

  • Craft / Object arts
  • Dance, Inter-Arts
  • Literature
  • Māori Arts
  • Multi-Artform (including film)
  • Music
  • Pacific art
  • Theatre 
  • Visual Arts

To be successful, applicants for funding under the Creative Communities Scheme:

Must meet a number of eligibility requirements before their application can be considered by the CCS assessors (the local CCS administrator will check that the application meets these requirements before passing it on to the assessors)

Show that the proposed project meets one or more of the scheme’s three funding criteria (access and participation; diversity; young people).

The Applicant

If the applicant is an individual they must be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident.

If the application is from a group or organisation they must be based in New Zealand.

If the applicant has already received funding from CCS for another project, they must have completed a satisfactory Project Completion Report for the other project before they can make another application, unless the other project is still in progress.

The Application

  • Must be on the standard application form provided by Creative New Zealand for the scheme
  • The proposed project or proposal must have an arts or creative cultural focus
  • Must have identified one of the three funding criteria
  • Must take place within the Waimakariri District
  • Must not have begun before any CCS funding is approved
  • Must not already have been funded through Creative New Zealand’s other funding programmes
  • Must be scheduled to be completed within 12 months after funding is approved
Creative Communities application guide
Download PDF File (212.8 KB)

Application Form

Open and download the Creative Communities application form!

Funding Criteria for CCS

There are three funding criteria under the Creative Communities Scheme:

  1. Access and participation
  2. Diversity
  3. Young people
  • Access and participation: The project will create opportunities for local communities to engage with and participate in local arts activities
  • Diversity: The project will support the diverse arts and cultural traditions of local communities, enriching and promoting their uniqueness and cultural diversity
  • Young people: The project will enable and encourage young people (under 18) to engage with and actively participate in the arts.

The types of costs that can be funded include:

  • Materials for arts activities or programmes, venue or equipment hire
  • Personnel and administrative costs for short term projects
  • Promotion and publicity of arts activities

Types of projects that can’t be funded under the Creative Communities Scheme include:

  • Projects without an arts focus
  • Projects within the scope of other sectors or organisations e.g. arts projects in schools or other educational institutions that are the core business of that institution.
  • Projects that mainly deliver outcomes for other sectors e.g. health, heritage or the environment
  • Facilities e.g. projects to develop galleries, marae, theatres and other venues - including the costs of fixed items, white-ware, floor coverings, furnishings, gallery and theatre lights, stage curtains or building restoration.

CCS funding is available for new artworks as part of marae projects such as tukutuku, whakairo, whāriki and kōwhaiwhai. However, applications for funding for marae facilities or restoration projects should be made to the Lottery Marae Heritage and Facilities fund, which is administered by the Lottery Grants Board.

  • On-going administration and service costs (such as salaries) that are not related to a specific project.
  • Travel for individuals or groups to attend events,
  • Presentations or shows outside the local area
  • Buying capital items or equipment, such as cameras, computers, instruments, costumes, lights or uniforms
  • Catering costs or any food or refreshment costs associated with a project.
  • Entry fees for competitions, contests and exams
  • Prize money, awards and judges’ fees for competitions
  • Payment of royalties
  • The paying off of accumulated debt or debt servicing
  • Buying existing artworks for collections held by for example, councils, museums, galleries, community groups or individuals.

Where any of the above costs are included in a CCS application, the applicant will need to be able to cover these costs from project income other than CCS funding, such as ticket sales or fundraising.


All successful applicants are required to:

  • Acknowledge the Creative Communities scheme in publicity for their project. The logo and guidelines for use can be downloaded from the Creative New Zealand website, at:
  • Acknowledge the assistance of the scheme verbally at event openings and performances
  • Complete a Project Completion Form within two months of the project being completed.
Project Completion Report Form
Download PDF File (185.1 KB)
Last reviewed date: 12 Jul 2024