“We are committed to enhancing the fantastic qualities young people have. We do this by supporting innovative youth-sector initiatives and building close relationships with our grant recipients. Together we learn, share and grow to create positive communities for kiwi youth.”
– Antony Welton, Vodafone NZ Foundation Chair and HR Director

Our vision

Our vision is for all young people in Aotearoa, New Zealand to live lives they value. With their energy and creativity, together with the right support, young people can achieve truly amazing things.

Our goal

Vodafone NZ Foundation’s goal is to encourage, support and empower young people to reach their full potential. To achieve this, we work alongside partners whose strength-based projects and initiatives encourage vulnerable youth to realise what they want out of life and ensure they have the tools to get there.

Our history

The Vodafone Foundation has been giving globally since 1991. For over 25 years, we have used our fundraising capability and access to Vodafone networks, technology, customers and employees to connect communities with the tools they need to make a difference. In New Zealand, we’ve been working since 2002.

Our work in New Zealand

Since Vodafone NZ Foundation was established in 2002, we have been committed to funding a variety of community organisations around the country. It is through these partnerships that we have learned where we can make the greatest difference – by empowering young people to reach their full potential.

We have funded projects and initiatives that share this goal since 2007, and are proud to not only have built partnerships with exceptional youth sector organisations, but also to have given over $20 million dollars in grants.

Our current focus remains on providing funding and capacity building to those supporting our most vulnerable young people, and it is thanks to generous financial support from both Vodafone Foundation UK and Vodafone New Zealand that we are able to donate around $2.5 million a year towards these projects and initiatives.

Vodafone NZ Foundation is a charitable trust and one of 27 Vodafone Foundations around the world and therefore a separate entity to Vodafone New Zealand. However, it is through this unique network of local foundations that Vodafone invests in the communities in which it operates.

Our alumni

Our whanau is made up of over 80 incredible individuals who have each made a world of difference to young people in New Zealand. Many of these alumni remain involved in our work, continuing to drive positive change in their communities. Regular alumni hui lets new and existing partners learn from each other and access professional development support to help make their vision a reality. We fund alumni collaboration on innovative new projects to improve youth sector outcomes and have held a series of wānanga, as well as offering sabbatical grants with more support mechanisms in the pipeline.

Our approach

Our programmes aim for long-term success. Ultimately, the projects we support should give back to the community long after our funding ends. Mentoring, networking and capacity building is also a key part of how we work, and gives individuals and organisations the tools to strengthen future opportunities for New Zealand’s most vulnerable youth.

Connecting for Good for 25 years

Around the world, the Vodafone Foundation connects communities in times of need. In addition to youth sector work, Instant Network has assisted relief efforts after natural disasters in the Philippines (Typhoon Haiyan and Typhoon Bopha), in Kenya (severe drought) and following Cyclone Winston in Fiji. Using Instant Network, over 1.04 million calls have been made and 1.98 million texts sent during those deployments.

Our work around the world

Now in 27 countries, the Vodafone Foundation strives to better connect communities through innovative technology and support.

DreamLab, Vodafone Foundation, Australia

Cancer researchers are hindered by limited access to supercomputers. That’s where DreamLab comes in. It’s a free app that uses the processing power of idle smartphones to speed up cancer research, so if just 1,000 people use it, cancer puzzles would be solved 30 times faster. All people have to do is download the DreamLab app from Google Play, charge their phone and wake up knowing they’ve helped find new ways to treat cancer.
Check out the DreamLab app


Instant Network

Through its award-winning Instant Network Programme, the Vodafone Foundation provides free communications and technical support to those affected by natural or humanitarian disaster. Over the past few years, trained Vodafone volunteers have assisted relief efforts in the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan in 2013 and Typhoon Bopha in 2012, as well as in Kaikor, Kenya during the severe drought of 2012. Volunteers also supported relief efforts in Port Vila in the Republic of Vanuatu after Cyclone Pam in 2015. And in February 2016, three Instant Network volunteers from Vodafone NZ Foundation (Lise Mackie, Rob McLennan and Callum Ferguson) went to Fiji to help with the recovery following Tropical Cyclone Winston.

Vodafone Employee Programmes

Vodafone is committed to supporting staff that want to get involved with the Foundation. There are a number of Vodafone employee programmes that give people the opportunity to do their bit for the charity of their choice – while inspiring their colleagues, family and friends to make a difference too. Vodafone Foundation manages these programmes and supports the business to encourage employee participation.


Hands Up Employee Programme

Hands Up provides an incredible opportunity for Vodafone staff to volunteer their time, skills and knowledge to organisations they’re passionate about, while still receiving their salary. It means the Foundation’s community partners and other organisations our people are passionate about get the expert assistance they need (free!) and Vodafone staff can make a positive contribution to the community as part of their job. Together they make a real difference to New Zealand youth.

Double Your $ Employee Programme

Double Your $ supports Vodafone staff that are raising money for their favourite New Zealand charities, as well as for those the Foundation works with. Vodafone Foundation matches the amount raised dollar for dollar up to $3,000. In 2015/16 the combined contributions from the Double Your $ programme raised more than $316,900 for charity.

Payroll giving

Through this voluntary scheme, Vodafone employees are able to donate to Vodafone NZ Foundation and other community organisations each time they get paid. They receive an immediate 33.33 percent tax credit via PAYE on the donation and the money goes directly towards funding our partners to do what they do best. To support young kiwis to live lives they value, Vodafone encourages its staff to engage in payroll giving to the Foundation or its partners.

Business Unit Challenge

Each year all the business units at Vodafone raise money and give volunteer hours to our partners with the aim of being the unit that raises the most money and gives the most time. Our teams take this challenge seriously and it allows our partners to gain more insight into our business.

Business Mentors

Each year Vodafone employees become mentors to our community partners with the goal of helping their organisation to be more sustainable. Through one to one relationships, they support our partners to increase their skills in governance, strategic planning, finance, marketing and other areas.