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Please contact us using any of the contact details listed below. Our office hours are 8:30am – 5:00pm, Monday – Friday. 

You may also find it useful to check out our FAQs section below.  

 

Contact us

Phone: (+64) 07 579 9839
info@acornfoundation.org.nz

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The Kollective, 145 17th Ave, Tauranga 3112

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DX Box HP40007, Tauranga 3112

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FAQs

See below to find answers to commonly asked questions about the Acorn Foundation.

Donors

Acorn endowment funds are set up by people from all walks of life, from average working families to the very wealthy. Each of our donors have one thing in common – a sincere wish to leave our community a gift so that it is better off in the future.  

Meet some of Acorn’s donors here

Once a donor has made the decision to set up fund with Acorn, it is a very simple process to get the change made to your Will. Most solicitors in the Western Bay are familiar with Acorn and know the clause that is needed to be added to an existing Will. The information can also be found on our website at Forms and Guidance Notes or in our Acorn Foundation packs that can be mailed out to you. Simply contact us  to request information.  

September is Wills Month, and many of our local solicitors have partnered with us to make a simple change to an existing Will to include a gift to Acorn at no charge throughout the month. Get more information about this promotion during Wills Month. 

After your Will is changed, you can meet with one of the Acorn staff members to fill out your Endowment Fund form that provides direction to us on how you want your fund distributed. We keep your wishes on file, and you can change your beneficiaries at any time without changing your Will. 

Learn more about setting up an Acorn endowment fund here

No, not at all. Many Acorn donors choose to give while they are alive so that they can see the benefits of their support in action. Besides endowment funds, there are all sorts of ways donors can support the community through Acorn:  

  • Regular giving to one of our 40+ Community Group Funds 

  • Workplace or Corporate Giving 

  • Giving Circles.  

Find out more in the Give for Today section.

Some donors choose to set up an endowment fund through giving during their lifetime. In this case, donors sign a fund form with the Acorn Foundation and select recipients, or leave distribution decisions to Acorn’s volunteer Distributions Committee. Donations can begin from their fund once it reaches the distributions threshold ($25,000 for distributions to unrestricted causes or $50,000 for distributions to named recipients).  

Learn more about setting up an Acorn endowment fund here.  

There is no fixed charge to set up an endowment fund with the Acorn Foundation. Acorn receives just 1% of the value of our total fund annually for its operating costs. 

There is no minimum amount required to set up a fund with the Acorn Foundation. An endowment fund will start distributing once it reaches $25,000, if distributing to unrestricted causes. Donors who wish to select their recipients will need to build their fund to $50,000 before distributions begin.

If you are interested in making a donation via internet banking, please make your gift to the Acorn Foundation Grants Account: 02-0466-0117382-02. Be sure to include your fund name if you want your gift to be credited to your endowment fund, or put the name of the Community Group Fund you intend to support. We’ll send a donation receipt in order for you to claim your tax credit.  

Please note: to protect you from fraud, we will never request or confirm your bank account or credit card details via email.  

We only distribute a portion of the interest income earned each year (4% for the past several years with a set rate of 35%), which means that over time the fund will continue to grow. You can work out your fund’s potential by using the CFNZ fund calculator

Our fund manager, Craigs Investment Partners, has achieved a compounded growth rate of 90% over the past 10 years, ending 30 June 2021. Although our primary goal is to protect the initial value of the capital, we believe that this method provides the best opportunity to inflation-proof the funds. 

Learn more about our fund performance here

A range of 3.5% – 5% is distributed from each fund annually. For the past several years, 4% has been distributed. A good way to think about annual distributions is the following: around $4,000 is distributed every year for each $100,000 that is invested in a fund. 

Learn more about our Smarter Giving Model here

Acorn has donors who choose specific charities to receive annual distributions from their fund, while other donors are perfectly happy to leave the decision to the Acorn Distributions Committee

Every year in May, local charities can apply for funding and applications are carefully evaluated by Acorn staff and the Distributions Committee. In August, Distributions Committee decisions are ratified by the Board and recipient charities are notified. Money is distributed in September.  

Find out which charitable organisations have received Acorn funding in the past, here

You are welcome to change your instructions regarding distributions at any time. Please give the Acorn team a call to discuss your interests.  

If you have left a gift in your Will, you will not need to change your Will; you can simply update the recipients in your Endowment Fund form that Acorn has on file. 

Our team and Distributions Committee members maintain excellent relationships with charitable organisations working in our community. If there is a concern about the operations of a charity which is a named beneficiary of a donor, our trustees will endeavour to identify another local recipient organisation that meets the aims of that donor. 

Acorn is governed by a voluntary Board of nine Trustees, who are ratified by local territorial authorities and professional bodies. We also have Committees comprised of community volunteers who are allocated certain tasks, but ultimately the Board is responsible for the success of the foundation. 

There are currently three full-time and three part-time paid staff members. 

Meet the team here

Acorn Trustees appoint a volunteer Investment Advisory Committee, whose role it is to oversee both the investment policy and the performance of the Investment Manager. Our investments are currently managed by our long-term partner, Craigs Investment Partners.  

Learn more about our investment approach here

We are the only foundation called Acorn but there are currently 16 other community foundations across New Zealand that are similar in nature to Acorn.  Each foundation is independent, but we all share ideas and belong to a national body, Community Foundations of NZ. 

Learn more about our community foundation network here

Recipients

Acorn has donors who choose specific charities to receive annual distributions from their fund, while other donors identify an area of interest (the environment, animal welfare, youth development). Many donors are perfectly happy to leave the decision to the Acorn Distributions Committee for some or all of their fund.  

Every year in May, many local charities apply for funding and applications are carefully evaluated by Acorn staff and the Distributions Committee. In August, Distributions Committee decisions are ratified by the Board and recipient charities are notified. 

Learn more about applying for Acorn funding here

We are the only foundation called Acorn but there are currently 16 other community foundations across New Zealand that are similar in nature to Acorn.  Each foundation is independent, but we all share ideas and belong to a national body, Community Foundations of NZ. 

Learn more about our community foundation network here

More than 40 local community groups have set up funds with Acorn, supporter funds are pooled and invested for perpetuity. The fund becomes active once it reaches the Acorn threshold of $50,000, and investment returns are used to make distributions to your group, year after year.  

All the information you need to know about setting up a Community Group Fund can be found here

Professional Advisors

Increasingly, many Kiwis want to give in a more strategic way, for a longer-term impact on the communities in which they live. The Acorn Foundation can add significant value to your client relationship by helping you provide a more holistic financial planning approach. 

Acorn can help your clients meet their charitable and financial goals, including: 

  • Endowments and Bequests 

  • Trustee succession planning for people with their own charitable trusts 

  • Gifts such as real estate, life insurance policies or shares, that are not easily transferable to other charitable entities. 

Learn more and find helpful resources in our Professional Advisors section here.  

It’s not essential that they contact Acorn directly, but we strongly encourage them to do so. Acorn can help your client to understand the full range of giving options open to them, and also help them to structure their endowment fund distributions so that they accurately reflect their wishes. It also allows Acorn to keep in touch, with invitations to events that can help them learn more about the local charitable sector, and to meet other like-minded people. We will always respect donors’ preference for anonymity however, should they wish.  

You can download useful forms, draft wording for Wills and Trusts, and guidance here.  

If you would like hard copies, please contact us. 

Corporate giving

There are many local organisations in the Western Bay of Plenty - large and small - doing great things in our communities. Setting up a Corporate Fund through Acorn is an easy way to make a difference in the region we all love.  

If you're interested in learning more about setting up a Corporate Fund with Acorn Foundation, click here.

Setting up a Corporate Fund through Acorn is different to Workplace Giving, which involves employee payroll giving. Find out more about Workplace Giving here.

Request a speaker

The Acorn team are available to present to your group, organisation or employees.

 

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