Countdown’s Growing for Good grants has awarded $75,000 to 71 schools and early childhood centres across the country.
Launched in 2018, Growing for Good aims to help foster New Zealand’s next generation of budding environmentalists, and inspire Kiwi kids to learn about and preserve the environment.
Successful projects include weka-safe chicken coops for rescue chickens at the Hira Rural Kindergarten in Nelson, vegetable garden restoration following extensive flooding at the Sunny Days Early Childhood Centre in Napier and an old swimming pool being turned into a community maara kai at St Joseph’s Primary in Wairoa.
General Manager Sustainability, Kiri Hannifin, says Countdown received a record number of applications for the grants with more than 500 early childhood centres, primary and intermediate schools getting involved.
“It was no easy feat making our final choices this year and in the end we decided to award an extra $25,000 of grants to meet the incredible passion we’ve seen from schools and ECEs in their applications” says Hannifin.
“It’s been inspiring to see so many projects flourish over the first two years of our Growing for Good grants and we’re excited to watch another round of schools and ECEs lead the way in sustainability.
As a food-focussed business, Countdown knows what a critical role the environment plays in New Zealand’s long-term sustainable future.
“We’re really pleased to have ended up with a variety of projects from berry farms to insect havens and sensory gardens that all have a strong focus on protecting our precious environment for generations to come.” says Hannifin.