Whenua Māori Fund

The Whenua Māori Fund supports whenua Māori based economic, cultural, social and environmental projects which help strengthen whānau, communities, regions and the New Zealand economy.

It assists Trustees and owners of whenua Māori to explore the potential of their whenua and to investigate the means of lifting productivity, either through improving and growing existing operations, diversification, or preparing for new ventures. 

Te Ataarangi Parata, Te Kaha Nursery 2IC, nurturing the young plants in Te Heriko, the plant nursery owned and operated by Te Kaha Landowners Group (TKG). TKG are supporting aspirations for whānau, including to whenua and employment. Photo credit: Josie McClutchie.

Criteria for applications

To be eligible to apply for funding from the Whenua Māori Fund:

  • Your whenua must be Māori freehold land. To check, enter your block details on the Tupu.NZ website, Find your whenua https://www.tupu.nz/
  • Your whenua must have a governing entity, i.e. Trust, Incorporation or other entity established under Te Ture Whenua Māori Act 1993 unless there are seven or fewer owners
  • If there are seven or fewer owners, each owner must be supportive of an application to the Fund.

How to apply

Applications can be made at any time throughout the year. If you think the Whenua Māori Fund could support you and your whānau, please contact your nearest Te Puni Kōkiri regional office, so our staff can help determine your eligibility and discuss your ideas for developing your whenua.

You can find the details of our regional offices here.

Whenua Māori Fund Application Form

For information about the Fund and to apply, please read the Fund information, application form and guidance form here.

Our whenua resources and services

Whenua Māori Services

Whānau development through whenua is an ongoing aspiration for Māori Freehold Landowners. For more information on how Te Puni Kōkiri could support you to achieve your whenua aspirations, click here.


Tupu is a one-stop shop for information about whenua Māori. The website provides access to tools, resources and reports about Māori land blocks. The website also explores ways you can better connect, look after and develop your whenua.

Māori Housing Network

Te Puni Kōkiri provides advice and funding information on the housing/ papakāinga needs of Māori land owners



Further whenua information and support

Māori Land Online

This resource from the Māori Land Court assists you to locate your land and neighbouring Māori land blocks that have the potential to be part of your application. It also presents information about the governance structure for your land and owner information.

Ministry of Primary Industries

Ministry of Primary Industries offers a range of funding and programmes, including Māori Agri-business, Sustainable Farming Fund and One Billion Trees Programme.

Department of Conservation

Department of Conservation offers the Ngā Whenua Rāhui/Mātauranga Kura Taiao Funds.


Project Overviews

To give you an idea of the types of projects the Whenua Māori Fund can support, we have provided overviews of some of the projects we have supported. You can view the Project Overviews of the Whenua Māori Fund recipients here.

Events and Updates

Latest events and updates for this section are listed below.

  • New whenua development calls people home

    • Date: 01 October 2020

    On a brilliant sky-blue day, whānau gathered on their ancestral land near Te Araroa on the East Cape to plant more than 1300 lime trees.

    Read more

  • Taranaki maara kai nourishing body, mind and soul

    • Date: 08 November 2019

    It’s not unusual for a garden to grow kai. But what about maara that also grow language and communities? That is exactly what is blooming under the watchful gaze of maunga Taranaki in Te Taihauāuru.

    Read more

  • Honeys of Te Urewera only the start

    • Date: 26 June 2018

    Every morning, Brenda Tahi wakes up in the valley of Ruatāhuna, and pours herself a hot cup of lime and honey sourced from the pristine Te Urewera forest that surrounds her home.

    Read more

  • $7 million for Whenua Māori Programme

    • Date: 21 May 2018

    As part of the Government's commitment to fit-for-purpose services for Māori land owners, $7 million has been set aside for the Whenua Māori Programme in Budget 2018.

    Read more

  • A man on a mission to bring people together

    • Date: 17 May 2018

    Standing up from his seat, Toko Kapea pulls out a map and holds it up high, letting the sheet unfold and roll down to the ground, revealing the Te Tai Hauāuru region.

    Read more

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