A Commitment to our Communities
Canterbury, Nelson, Marlborough & the Chatham Islands
The purpose of the Trust, which was established in 1988, is to distribute funds for charitable, cultural, philanthropic and recreational benefits in our four regions – all of which benefit our quality of life.
Our donations in turn, assist thousands of people working in numerous voluntary organisations, to create their own social and cultural dividends thereby rewarding their communities.
During 1997, our Trust made the major decision to sell its substantial shareholding in Trust Bank New Zealand Limited, which lifted our total equity from $325,737,272 to $393,126,558.
While Trustees were duty bound to act as they did, a Trust such as ours, should not have virtually all its assets in one investment. The wisdom of the decision is highlighted annually within our Annual Reports.
The work of Trustees and management in determining long-term investment policies has been time consuming and demanding. With the guidance of our Investment Adviser, Mercer, we have developed long-term investment strategies which look to preserve the real value of the Trust’s assets, while at the same time maintaining a strong level of support for our community.
As so many community organisations rely on our Trust for a contribution as part of their annual funding, we are working towards the establishment of substantial reserves of approximately $50 million which, in the event of a local and/or international financial market downturn, will enable the Trustees to continue funding the vital work of community based organisations.
Accordingly, our strategies allow for a wide range of conservative investments, both New Zealand and international, utilising the expertise of local and overseas Fund Managers. After interviews, deliberations, and due diligence, Trustees made appointments, which today are still in operation.
“The most rewarding aspect of the Trust is the understanding we gain of the voluntary work of so many people for their respective communities”
A major contribution to our donation decisions is made by our 12 Trustees, eight from Canterbury and two each from Marlborough and Nelson, whose local knowledge and backgrounds brings a well-balanced perspective to our Board table.
The Trustees, having taken professional advice, have presently allocated from income sufficient funds to ensure that the capital of the Trust is protected against inflation and to meet potential population growth within the regions.
We appreciate the support given by our management and staff in meeting the challenges of what is now a major organisation, and the valued advice from our financial and legal advisers.
Finally, the most rewarding aspect of the Trust is the understanding we gain of the voluntary work of so many people for their respective communities, which re-enforces the fact that New Zealanders have a long history of working together to help one another.