Generous grants for Canterbury: Christchurch Casinos Charitable Community Trust

This year, the Christchurch Casinos Charitable Community Trust (CCCCT) is giving away $451,000 to hundreds of Canterbury and West Coast community organisations.

The Trust, which has given away more than $5.5million since 1994, brought recipients together for a night of celebration at the Majestic Church in June. This year, 335 organisations (some pictured) are receiving donations, from $200 to $15,000.

“The services they perform with limited resources are invaluable, and the fact so many are run by volunteers is awe inspiring. We’re honoured to support them,” says Brett Anderson, Christchurch Casino CEO.

The focus of this year’s grants are organisations catering to youth, the community, and wellbeing. Sports organisations featured prominently among the recipients. North Canterbury Riding for the Disabled, for example, is putting the Trust’s support towards new equipment, such as helmets, for their riders. The all-volunteer run service offers therapeutic riding to people, of all ages, with disabilities. They have 40-50 riders, but with a long waitlist, their services are in high demand.

“Surf clubs are another group we made sure to assist. They play a critical role in protecting our beaches and providing opportunities to young people,” says Brett.

With cost of living on the rise, the need for assistance is growing. More and more businesses and organisations are restricting spending and charities are feeling the pinch.
He adds that Aweko Kai is one organisation facing this challenge head-on by helping vulnerable whānau reconnect with the whenua, and save money by teaching people how to plant, grow, and cook, their own food. Funds from the CCCCT are essential to provide incredible programmes like the one Aweko Kai is running at Christchurch Women’s Prison.

“We also gave money to every toy library that applied to ensure the continuation of this fantastic resource for kids and families,” says Brett.

With more than 500 groups applying for funding, Brett says the Trust knew it wanted to have a bigger impact this year, so set the “giving target” at $200-$15,000 to assist more people. An example, he cites is Brackenridge. “Every little bit helps as they support over 200 people with intellectual disabilities and autism to live the life they want. They offer mana-enhancing support across the Canterbury region.”

CCCCT Trustee Barry Corbett agrees. “We’d love to see greater co-operation and collaboration across the sector. It’s important for them to see they’re not alone, to give, and gain support from one another. Our ultimate goal is to facilitate that collaboration, remove duplication from the system, and allow these organisations to thrive and do more for Cantabrians,” he says.

“What a great city I live in. Look at all these wonderful organisations doing great work. We feel fortunate to help them.”

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