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COVID-19 has made things harder for some Pacific learners and families, including putting pressure on their wellbeing and ability to engage in education.

Pacific Education Support Fund (APPLICATIONS NOW CLOSED)

Many community groups and Pacific providers have been working to support Pacific learners and families to engage in education during the COVID-19 response and recovery, and to make sure Pacific learners and families have access to the services and support.

The Pacific Education Support Fund is available for community providers, groups and organisations to help learners and their families to meet education-related and wellbeing needs arising from and/or exacerbated by COVID-19.

Schools, Early Learning Services and Tertiary Institutions are not eligible for funding from the Pacific Education Support Fund; please refer to the Pacific Innovation Fundhere.

Education-related needs are the needs and supports required to ensure Pacific learners can engage in meaningful education. This includes supporting wellbeing and growing meaningful relationships. Examples of initiatives could include:

  • Growing relationships between Pacific families and places of learning by making connections and supporting families and learners to reconnect.
  • Joining up Pacific learners and families with the right services that provide support for education-related needs, for example with on-site learning and accessing ongoing education and training pathways.
  • Supporting the return to learning at school or early learning, finding the right education and training pathways.
  • Supporting attendance and engagement for Pacific learners.

The Pacific Education Support Fund is part of the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund and invests $39.7m over four years (2020/21 to 2023/24) to broker support for Pacific learners and families to access education.

Apply now for the Pacific Education Support Fund

Budget (Regional Allocations)

$6m will be available in five regions in 2021/22.  There is no maximum amount of funding you can apply for, but it must be within the amount allocated to your region. The funding has been distributed, as follows:

  • $4m for Auckland
  • $344,000 for Waikato
  • $211,000 for Hawke’s Bay - Tairāwhiti
  • $941,000 for Wellington
  • $484,000 for Canterbury and Chatham Island

The funding allocated to Auckland reflects the significant number of Pacific learners in the region and the impact of COVID-19 Alert level changes. The five regions have a large proportion of the Pacific learner population, based upon the proportion and total number of Pacific learners.


To apply for the current funding, you must meet the following criteria:

  • You are a community group/organisation, church group or social sector provider based in the following education regions: Auckland, Waikato, Hawke’s Bay-Tairāwhiti, Wellington or Canterbury and Chatham Islands
  • Your group is a legal entity and has a bank account in the name of the legal entity
  • You, and members of your group, are New Zealand citizens or permanent residents and reside in New Zealand
  • Your project will be designed and delivered in one of the five regions mentioned above and will support learners and families of Pacific heritage to access services and support and engage in education
  • Any products or resources developed using the funding will be freely available to Pacific learners and their families
  • Your group has no outstanding financial/legal issues (i.e. bankruptcy, legal challenges etc.)

Providers who have existing contracts with the Ministry and providers who don’t have existing contracts with the Ministry can both apply.

Providers who were successful for the 2020/21 round of funding are eligible to apply again. The assessment process will take into consideration the progress you have made from the first round. You will need to provide details on the funding you have received in the application form.

You can apply for funding to extend or build on your current project. You will need to provide details on the funding you have received for your project in the application form.

You can only submit one application per region as the lead applicant to the Support Fund. You can participate in more than one application as a partner or associate; however, providers cannot apply multiple times to one region as the lead provider/group of a project.

The Pacific Education Support Fund will not fund the following:

  • Early learning services, schools and tertiary organisations. However, they are eligible for the Pacific Education Innovation Fund, here.
  • Activities that early learning services, schools and tertiary providers are already funded to deliver (direct activities run by early learning services, schools and tertiary providers).
  • For-profit activities and/or any activity to raise funding for providers, for example using funding to fundraise.
  • Initiatives that don’t match the priorities of this fund.
  • Programmes and activities occurring overseas, including in the NZ realm countries.
  • Overseas travel.
  • Infrastructure or capital expenses
    • Capital equipment will not be funded; the Ministry of Education may allow for appropriate leasing of essential (e.g. of laptops) items at its discretion.

Assessment criteria

Eligible applications will be reviewed against the following criteria:

  • How the application meets the purpose of the Fund
  • Evidence that the project is responding to the needs of Pacific learners and addressing an education-related need arising from or made worse by COVID-19.
  • Evidence of your capacity/capability to deliver the proposed project
  • Sufficient resources for your project that add value for Pacific learners and their families

We are interested in:

  • What your project will do, including what difference it will make for Pacific learners and families
  • How the project will meet education-related needs for Pacific learners and families
  • Who are the learners and families your project will support
  • How much funding you are seeking

Monitoring and reporting

You will be expected to report on progress of your project. More information will be made available on reporting requirements to successful applicants.

Pacific Education Support Fund Translations

Fäeag Rotuma
Gagana Sāmoa
Gagana Tokelau
Te Taetae ni Kiribati
Lea Faka Tonga
te 'gana Tuvalu
te reo Māori Kuki 'Āirani
Vagahau Niue
Vosa vaka-Viti

Application Process

Application guidance

To help develop your proposal, the application guidance takes you through all the questions in the online application forms below. Reading it will help you prepare your application.

Application guidance - all regions

Video guidance

This video provides a step by step guideline to assist you with your application.

Transcript of the Pacific Education Support Fund video guidance

If you require assistance with the application process in your Pacific language, contact us: Pacific.Supportfund@education.govt.nz

Project plan and budget templates

You can use this template to submit your work plan or submit an alternative format.

Project work plan template

You can use this template to submit your budget, or you may decide to submit a different format.

Budget template

Apply now

Pacific Education Support Fund application form


Applications for the Pacific Education Support Fund are open from 10 March 2021 to 19 April 2021.

You will be notified about the outcome of your application in June 2021. You may be contacted after your application has been submitted if we have any queries relating to your submission. 

You can apply for funding to be spent in one year by the end of June 2022 or to be spent in two years by the end of June 2023. You will be notified about the outcome of your application in June 2021.

Make sure you meet all of the eligibility requirements and download the questions before you apply. 


If you have questions that are not answered in the information provided email: Pacific.Supportfund@education.govt.nz


If applications meet the criteria to be assessed and are reviewed as successful to progress to funding agreement stage there will be several due diligence requirements that will need to be met, these are likely to include, among others:

  • Are all paid employees/contractors who will be working as a children’s worker safety checked and are these current?
  • Does the organisation have a written policy in place which meets the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015?
  • Does the organisation have policy and processes in place for any personal information held which meets the requirements of the Privacy Act 1993?
  • Is the organisation a legal entity?
  • Are there any material risks? e.g. pending litigation.
  • Does the supplier have any convictions that could compromise the contract?