How the Acorn Foundation works

The Acorn Foundation has been working in the Western Bay of Plenty region since 2003, connecting generous people who care with causes that matter. We are building a charitable fund that will cater for the current and future needs of our region - forever. We are fortunate that we get to work with fantastic, kind and caring local people who are looking to contribute to our community.

To date, on behalf of our generous donors, the Acorn Foundation has given away over $8.3M since 2003 to local charitable organisations in the Western Bay of Plenty.

Our process in action


You decide to give, and you approach the Acorn Foundation

No matter your age, financial situation or background, there are many ways that you can have a real impact in your community through the Acorn Foundation. Contact us to find out more.


You choose how best to give to the community

We help you find the way to give to the community that suits your situation best. We will continue to keep you updated with information about how your gift is making a real difference in the Western Bay of Plenty.

Leave a Gift in Your Will

Look after your family and help others in need in our community

Workplace Giving

Make a positive social impact on the community in which you work

Giving Circles

Join a group of like-minded, caring people and pool your resources

Giving Regularly

Give a little, often and see the impact of your gifts in action


You decide who to support

You can select the community organisations you wish to support, or choose to allow the Acorn Foundation to determine the organisations working to meet the greatest needs in the community - as seen in the findings from the 2018 Vital Signs Report.

You can change your distribution recipients in the future without having to change your Will.


Your Fund is established

Your fund is established, invested and then activated as shown below.

Fund established
Fund established

Your fund is established with the Acorn Foundation.

Donations invested
Donations invested

Using our Smarter Giving Model, endowment donations are invested in perpetuity. Our fund is currently managed by Craigs Investment Partners with robust governance by volunteer Trustees who are appointed, not elected.

Fund activated
Fund activated

Fund becomes active for annual distributions once it reaches the $50,000 Acorn Foundation threshold.


Your gift is provided

Depending on how you chose to give, your fund is provided to community organisations in one of two different ways:

Annual distributions made
Annual distributions made

Unlike a one-off donation to a specific charity, gifts to community organisations via the Acorn Foundation using our Smarter Giving Model are invested in perpetuity. Once a fund reaches the $50,000 distributions threshold, the investment income is used to make annual distributions to those community organisations, forever.

This means that a single gift from a generous donor will grow and continue to contribute to the community - forever!

Donating via Acorn Foundation can provide local charitable organisations with security and a stable income stream. These groups can rely on receiving funding every year through Acorn, which allows them to plan and budget in advance, while also reducing the amount of time spent fundraising - allowing them to get on with the good work they do in our community.

Gift is passed through to charities annually
Gift is passed through to charities annually

Gifts provided via Giving Circles and in some cases, Workplace Giving, are passed straight to the chosen community organisations each year.