The Miss Rotorua Foundation is set to open its new community centre which will provide a base for the foundation’s free courses, as well as other social services aiming to improve the lives of rangatahi and whānau.
The centre, on Pukuatua St, has been made a reality with the help of a funding boost by Rotorua Trust and will open its doors to the public on 17 July.
The funding is part of the partnership agreement Rotorua Trust has committed to, where an annual fund is given to 10 different community organisations over three years to help with operational costs.
The Miss Rotorua Foundation will receive $40,000 annually for three years to go towards the community centre building lease and other operating costs.
The Miss Rotorua Foundation provides social services for youth and whānau, enhances the vibrancy of Rotorua through arts and culture, works in partnership with Rotorua Lakes Council to care for the environment, and supports rangatahi into employment.
Miss Rotorua Foundation Secretary Kharl WiRepa says operating out of the centre will allow the foundation to offer free courses, including a confidence course and an employability course to help people into employment.
“Rotorua currently has between 6000 and 7000 people unemployed, and the course will help our people find a job they will enjoy. We don’t just want them getting any job, we want them to be stars and reach their full potential.”
WiRepa says the foundation partners with other organisations to provide a range of services out of the centre.
“We will offer a wānanga which gives our people the opportunity to learn more about the Māori culture and history of New Zealand, a free dance studio for community groups to book, and board rooms and classrooms for the community to access. We will also help clothe people and provide food to those who need it.”
WiRepa says the foundation wouldn’t be able to reach its full potential without Rotorua Trust’s support.
“Rotorua Trust is giving us the financial stability we need to open the community centre and provide these services. It will significantly help us to reshape and guide our community. “
Rotorua Trust Chairman Stewart Edward says the partnership programme gives organisations a degree of certainty that they will be able to continue their services for at least the next three years.
“The Miss Rotorua Foundation provides a highly valued social service, and the entire community will benefit from the centre.”