11/2015 CCS November Newsletter

Here is Your November CCS Newsletter...

'Sing It To My Face' is an inter-generational music theatre project featuring volunteer local singers. Four different local generational choirs let each other know how they really feel about society in a stylised, theatrical performance of a fully scored choral arrangement www.barbarian.co.nz. This project was initially funded via Wellington CCS and went on to have a second season, with local performers, at the Kokomai Festival in Waiararapa. 

Kia ora koutou,

Where has the year gone?!  With only five weeks until Christmas, it’s time to start counting down to some well-deserved time off, seeing family and friends…and hopefully some sunshine!  It’s also time to start wrapping up your CCS admin requirements for the year – in particular any outstanding reports due in late November or in December. Our office will be closed from Friday 25 December 2015, re-opening on Monday 11 January 2016.  If you are experiencing any issues pulling your reports together, please just give us a call.

This is a long newsletter with lots of important information so please take time to read it.

Farewell Helen…and introducing Mel

Helen Higgins recently moved on from Creative New Zealand to take up a new role in another organisation.  Mel Weeks, who has been job-sharing with Helen since June, is now covering all things CCS-related and working alongside Briar.  Many of you will have been dealing with Mel for some time already – she is your first port-of-call for anything to do with reporting, payments, eligibility criteria and so on.  Please contact her on: ccsadmin@creativenz.govt.nz or call the Auckland office on 09 373 3066.

Dropbox link

Just a reminder that all current CCS forms, guides, brochures (in 11 different languages), sample forms and recent newsletters are available via our Dropbox folder
Remember that if you need to adapt the application form, there are instructions on how to do this in the Dropbox folder.

Sharing this newsletter with your committee

We recommend that you forward these newsletters to your assessment committee - however we ask that assessors direct any questions they might have through their CCS administrator. With over 500 assessors across the country, Mel and Briar don’t have capacity to respond to everyone individually!

Do you need more CCS Brochures?

Please check how many CCS brochures you have in stock at your office – and let us know how many brochures you think you will need over the next 12 months. You can drop a quick email to Mel on CCSAdmin@creativenz.govt.nz

Submitting reports

Reports are due eight weeks from each funding round closing date, which should allow enough time for assessment by your committee, completing the grants tracking tool and returning it to us.

If returning your report within this time frame is an issue, please contact us to discuss.

Running funding workshops

Many of you run funding workshops and this is a great way to let people know about CCS and to give support to applicants.  Here are a few pointers you may find useful when planning funding workshops:
  • CCS assessors can be involved in the process
  • Depending on your focus, these can be stand-alone workshops or combined with other community funding –  with council or more broadly within the context of your community
  • Sometimes funding workshops are best if they are kept informal - more of a conversation or discussion
  • If you feel that a visual element would be helpful, there is a PowerPoint presentation available in the CCS Dropbox folder
  • The PowerPoint presentation can be adapted to include local images if you want (and have the time)
  • The information in the presentation reflects what is in the application form and guide
  • Basic notes/prompts have been included to help guide CCS administrators if this is their first time running a funding workshop
If you want any advice on this, please give us a call.

Conflicts of interest

A reminder that you must follow conflict of interest protocols (refer to page 22 in the Administrator’s Guide).
Remember that it is important to maintain the integrity of the committee and to guarantee that its decision-making is transparent.
Direct, indirect and perceived conflicts must be declared – where there is a conflict of interest, the committee member must leave the room while the rest of the committee is assessing the application in question.

Sharing project completion reports with your assessors

It’s important for assessors to understand the results of their decisions through reports and attending events so please make sure that reports are available to assessors. Depending on numbers of reports you are dealing with, this might be:
  • having reports available at assessment meetings to refer back to, or for assessors to view
  • a verbal update from administrators on reports and key outcomes
  • simply a copy of the ‘in progress’ tab once you have changed from ‘in progress’ to ‘complete’
Where possible, please encourage applicants to let you know when projects are happening and encourage assessors to attend events.

CNZ logos link

The link on page 15 of the Administrator’s Guide to the Creative New Zealand logos on the Creative New Zealand website is incorrect. It should read: www.creativenz.govt.nz/about-creative-new-zealand/logos

We will get this corrected when we next update the Administrator’s Guide

Telling the story - Whakatāne

Please keep sending us images and stories of successful projects. It’s really important to share examples and tell others of the success of CCS. We are compiling these so they can be shared with assessors and potential applicants across New Zealand.

'Inamata, Onamata, Anamata: our yesterday, our today, our tomorrow'  was a collaborative exhibition by two leading contemporary Māori artists of new works inspired by the collection of the Whakatāne Museum and Research Centre. Local artist Sarah Hudson (Ngāti Awa, Ngāi Tūhoe) and Hamilton based creative Aimee Ratana (Ngāi Tūhoe) created 18 new artworks that were supported by objects from the Museum collection, including Taonga Māori and native New Zealand bird specimens.

Getting the committee and applicants face to face

Many committees allow applicants to make presentations to the committee. Janie Storey from Whakatāne has this to say about this process:

“The option to interview applicants on the meeting day just before the allocation of funding has proved popular.  The process makes the funding more real – the committee members get to learn more about the applicant and the applicant realises that the people responsible for allocating the money want to know more about them and what they are planning on doing.  It also puts people at ease as they experience the process which gives them a better understanding and they find it is not daunting after all.  There is often a two-way exchange where suggestions are made that the applicant may not have considered.  CCS is a very small part of my job with the Whakatāne District Council – however, it is one of the most satisfying.  Having the committee and applicants meet face to face also means we don’t have to go back to applicants and ask for extra information or second guess if the information in the application isn’t quite clear. A win-win situation for all.”

Where committees have a lot of applicants they sometimes choose to split the committee into two and interview the applicants in two groups. Other committees also choose to have all applicants in the room at the same time – this helps cross-pollinate information, supports best practice and helps groups to know what else is happening or available across the district.

‘Connected’ was produced by Theatre Whakatane – a one-act musical about cyber bullying. To make the show more worth our while they decided to give the youth members a turn at learning the ropes and for each member of youth to be the head of department, mentored by an adult member of the theatre. With support from CCS they also employed professional director, Bryan Aitken, to help guide the cast and to teach the youth crew how to create a musical.


For all our FAQ’s see the CCS Dropbox. If you have any persistent questions please share them with us – you won’t be alone!

What input can a CCS Administrator have?

CCS Administrators cannot make decisions on applications and need to remain impartial. However administrators can provide information to assist the assessment committee in reaching a decision.

Examples include:
  • information from previous project completion reports
  • supplementary and objective information about the applicant’s history of delivering projects, or other factors that might contribute to the success (or otherwise) of the project
  • advised amounts based on eligibility or otherwise of costs included and/or (if the administrator has expertise in delivering arts projects) specific costs/income lines in the budget
However, it is very important that the administrator does not seek to influence the committee’s decisions – you must remain impartial

What happens if a project doesn’t spend all of its money?

There are two instances where an applicant may not spend all their money – if costs are less than anticipated, or they receive unanticipated income
If things cost less, as a general rule the funds need to be returned
But applicants can request in writing that they keep the funds and put these towards their next project. If this happens you need to take this request to the committee – either the next meeting, or fordecision by email
If the group has received more income from other sources than budgeted, but all the costs in original budget were incurred, then they can keep all the CCS funding.
Remember though that projects that are focused on fundraising are not eligible for support via CCS.

What’s the difference between ‘project’and ‘programme’?

Questions often come up about funding activity that is part of an arts business or that is ongoing activity
The term ‘project’ refers to an activity that has a start and finish date – this might be short-term (e.g. a one-off weekend workshop) or long-term (e.g. a programme of exhibitions over an eight month period). The programme or project, however, must be completed within 12 months of being funded and, of course, deliver to one of the three funding criteria – participation, diversity, young people

What is ‘core business’?

Where the guidelines refer to ‘core business’, this specifically refers to schools and other government- funded institutions or agencies – where the ‘core business’ is already funded by government. CCS cannot support this activity as that would be considered double dipping. Please see the guidelines re schools in the Dropbox.
CCS can fund professional arts activity and arts businesses even if this is the ‘core business’ of that individual or business. An example might be a dance school putting on an end of year production with their students. It would be appropriate for them to apply for costs associated with the production (administrative and artistic fees, promotion, venue hire, materials, production costs) however we would expect to see all the estimated income from the project (e.g. a portion of the student fees and/or ticket sales in this instance) included in the budget.

What if an applicant wants to change their project after they have been funded?

It‘s not uncommon for projects to change after they have been funded, however, significant changes need to be approved in writing.

The administrator should discuss any requested changes with the chair. If the administrator and chair are unsure they should take it to the wider committee.

… and finally

It has been a great pleasure working with all of you this year. Your commitment to the scheme, your generosity with applicants and your assessment committees, and your encouragement and support as we keep working to improve access, processes and resources, make CCS an incredibly important and successful part of the arts landscape that reaches hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders every year.
So, thank you to you all.

Ko tā koutou rourou, ko tā matou rourou, ka ora tatau katoa
With your food basket and our food basket everyone will thrive
Briar and Mel
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