The Hutt Mana Charitable Trust (HMCT) has contributed $200,000 towards the state-of-the-art Ricoh Sports Centre at Fraser Park Sportsville in Lower Hutt which opened in February 2019.
Trudy Englebretsen, General Manager, Fraser Park Sportsville, says at 27 hectares it’s the largest park in the region and hugely significant in the sporting arena. “Annually we have about 300,000 park users and approximately 120 different clubs playing on Fraser Park.”
HMCT trustee Ken Laban says that’s a huge number of the population, be they family members, supporters or members of the clubs, that have something to do with Sportsville.
“During the ongoing drive to obtain funding for the Ricoh Sports Centre (led by Hutt City Community Facilities Trust and Hutt City Council) HMCT had the opportunity to support the initiative with $200,000 of funding over two years,” says Ken
“We were unanimous in our decision to support this initiative not only because we could see it would be a great asset for the community but also because it showed what can be achieved if people work together and fundraise together. We knew that the grant would have a significant impact across a significant percentage of the population.”
Ken says what has been achieved is a shining example of how sporting clubs can come together to achieve something special.
“We’ve seen the member clubs work together to pool their resources and what has come out of that is a state-of-the-art club house with everything needed to for the next generations.”
Trudy says the HMCT funding is part of a larger funding package that has allowed Sportsville to create more than just a home to many sports clubs, it’s also a facility that can also be used by community and corporate groups.
“The funding of the facility has been a case of everyone working together. We have so many people contributing to make up the whole package. The support from funders and sponsors has just been amazing.”
“We looked to provide a facility that met the community and the region’s needs, we have a café and a restaurant onsite, we have artificial turfs, six squash courts, an indoor activity space, meeting rooms, function and event spaces and a sports admin hub for staff of sports clubs or groups. Facilities that are second to none and that will attract and host many sporting, corporate and social events,” says Trudy.
This large-scale HMCT funding grant sits outside of the bi-annual community grants funding that the Trust administers.
“As a charitable trust we have a lot of discretion in the way we operate and if large scale initiatives are presented to us that clearly benefit a large number of people in the Hutt/Mana region then we’re happy to look at that outside of our normal funding rounds,” says Ken.