Challenge at COGS celebrationPosted December 12th 2016
Ignite Sport Coordinator Kevin Goldsbury challenged guests at the launch of the COGS (Community Organisation Grants Scheme) 2015/2016 Profile, to invest in partnerships.
“By working together everyone achieves more, which is why partnerships are of critical importance to charities,” he said. “However, it’s is when we choose to work together and invest together that gives the best possible chance for change.”
Kevin was invited as guest speaker to talk on behalf of the hundreds of organisations which have received COGS funding during the 30 years the scheme has been in operation.
Below is Kevin’s full speech, addressed to Hon Jo Goodhew MP, Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector and COGS National committee members.
"Thank you for this opportunity to speak today and to help celebrate thirty years of ‘giving’. Although my involvement is with Ignite Sport Trust, I speak on behalf of the many community and volunteer organizations who faithfully serve their networks and communities, many of who have received and benefited from COGS funding.
Ignite Sport’s aim is to help young people reach their ‘full’ potential in sport, education and in life. Over 900 young people benefit every year from our Youth Development initiatives in Wellington communities and a further 3500 have benefited from a wide range of community events and activities. I believe we are making a significant difference, particularly to young people who are considered most vulnerable. A highlight for us is also connecting with and supporting former refugee youth through our Fusion initiative.
Strategic involvement and intentional relationships with youth is critical. We must encourage todays younger generation to make the right ‘choices’ at a ‘time’ when they are making some of their most important decisions. Decisions that will shape their lives and determine their future.
Our influence and the influence and work of many ‘not for profit’ organizations in the community counts. Ongoing investment from various Government and non-Government sources is critical. Not necessarily for our survival, as many groups operate with ‘heart’ and will continue to ‘give’ with or without funding. However, it’s is when we choose to work together and invest together that gives the best possible chance for change. By working together everyone achieves more, which is why partnerships are of critical importance to charities.
The funding we all have received from COGS and the investment given by many who serve on the various COGS Committee has made life that much easier for organisations like ours. But more importantly, COGS funding has helped change lives, literally!
It would be difficult to add up the ‘full’ benefit of our combined efforts. Perhaps we will never fully know, but for the one young person whose life changed direction, or the one young mum who felt valued, or the one family who a new found faith in the system, to them our combined efforts means the absolute world! Perhaps in fact the difference between ‘have’ or ‘have not’, opportunity or lack of, purpose in living or a sense of helplessness or hopelessness. Again I say, COGS funding has helped change lives!
On behalf of the many community organizations who have benefited from COGS grants, thank you. Thank you for the part you have played as part of the Not For Profit team. Please do not stop investing. Do not stop giving, and continue to drive forward opportunities that encourage communities to make decisions about community matters. Thank you"