Rural Community Hubs

Rural Community Hubs is a programme to help rural communities respond to the challenges they face. Find out how to apply for funding to start a hub.

Building connections in rural communities

The Rural Community Hubs programme is to help isolated and vulnerable communities. The aim is to strengthen their resilience and wellbeing by:

  • building social connections to support their ability to adjust and respond positively to change
  • improving employment prospects through training opportunities
  • promoting activities that encourage social inclusion and help develop networks.

Rural Community Hubs – fact sheet [PDF, 942 KB]

Funding available to start a hub

Community groups and organisations can get funding to help establish a hub.

The money can be used to employ a part-time coordinator to:

  • assist with running activities
  • write a work plan
  • set up appropriate support activities.

Community support is crucial. You'll need creative, dedicated people from the community to lead the project. They can help make sure it can continue beyond the start-up funding.

Communities that have funding from another source (like economic development) can also apply for this funding.

What you will need to start a hub

Communities seeking funding to establish a Rural Community Hub should have:

  • a motivated and committed group with strong leadership to drive the project
  • a plan to improve community connections and access to wellbeing services
  • a list of priority issues and problems in the community that need solutions
  • a desire to seek additional support, including funding, grants, sponsorship, or donations, to ensure the project’s long-term sustainability.

How to apply for funding

You'll need to write and submit a formal Expression of Interest (EOI).

The EOI should include:

  • background about your community
  • your goals and aspirations for the hub
  • an outline of what the funding will be used for and what it will achieve.

You might want to talk to us about your plans before you submit an EOI.

To discuss your hub or submit your EOI, email

Hubs are spreading across NZ

We funded the first Rural Community Hub in December 2019. There are now hubs across New Zealand like one started by the Tapawera Connect Trust to help mothers.

Initiative helps connect rural mothers in Tasman [PDF, 1.8 MB]

Who to contact

If you have questions about Rural Community Hubs, email

Last reviewed: