Three Dannevirke groups have secured community grants for freshwater improvement projects.

They were among 14 successful applicants who will receive funding from the Manawatū River Leaders' Forum for freshwater improvement projects throughout the Manawatū Catchment.

Dannevirke's Huia Range School has received funding for riparian fencing and planting of the Tapuata stream and education.

Te Taiao Ukaipo, Dannevirke, has received funding for weed control, stream fencing, riparian planting and monitoring of the Otamaraho and Mangapuaka Streams.

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The third Dannevirke recipient of funding was Dannevirke Host Lions Club for growing rata to be planted in riparian zones in the Tararua District which is a continuation of a two-year project started last year.

The Manawatū River Leaders' Accord runs a contestable community funding programme once a year with the support of Horizons Regional Council.

In 2018 the fund was expanded with help from the Manawatū District Council and the Ministry for the Environment, through the Freshwater Improvement Fund.

Manawatū River Leaders' Accord independent chair Richard Thompson says that thanks to last year's expansion of funding there is a further three years of $100,000 available for community projects per year.

"The grants aim to assist non-profit organisations such as community groups, schools, catchment care groups and iwi/hapū with projects that will help increase engagement with Manawatū waterways and improve water quality in the catchment," says Thompson.

"This year we received 20 applications seeking a total of $392,000 collectively. Each application was of exceptional calibre.

"We have managed to award the $100,000 to 14 projects, which is very exciting.

Three of these were initially funded in 2018 for a two-year period, two are new applications for projects which began last year, and the remaining nine are entirely new.

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Other projects to be funded are:

Fallow Ave Wapiti Ave Community Restoration Reserve Group, Feilding, for installation of a track through a gully system in the headwaters of the Mangaone West Stream and riparian planting of the gully;
Mangaone West Landcare Group, Feilding for weed control for the plantings that were funded through the Manawatū River Leaders' Accord Community Grants last financial year;
Foxton Save Our River Trust for planting of 500 giant weeping flaxes along the Foxton Loop, continuation of a project that was started in 2012;
Source of Kiwitea for native planting of a gully in the headwaters of the Kiwitea Stream involving the local Waituna West School, and Waituna West playcentre;
Te Keo Wetland, Tiraumea, for the retirement of a wetland, riparian planting, community engagement and monitoring equipment;
Te Roopu Taiao o Ngāti Whakatere Trust, Shannon, retirement and riparian planting of a culturally significant wetland in Shannon;
Manawatū River Source to Sea Plastic Pollution Project Phase 2 and Source of the Manawatū, Te Kauru and Drysdale, for building on the foundations of the project started last year;
Ōroua River Catchment Care Group 'Windows to the Ōroua' for building on the foundations of the project started last year for stage one – opening up access to the Ōroua River;
Ngā Kaitiaki ō te Rerenga Rauropi, Palmerston North, for the restoration of the Pioneer Highway Stream.

Horizons Regional Council has a targeted rate for the Manawatū River Leaders' Accord. This rate contributes $410,000 per year to Accord activities, with 15-20 per cent going toward the community grants programme.