Matariki Tu Rākau funding for memorial tree planting in your community

Your community can apply for funding to plant trees as living memorials to men and women of the New Zealand Defence Forces.

Watch our video (3.01)

About Matariki Tu Rākau tree planting

Matariki Tu Rākau is part of the One Billion Trees programme. It's helping communities to plant living memorials honouring our NZ Defence Force members, past and present.

The Government announced Matariki Tu Rākau on Anzac Day, 25 April 2018. The first tree plantings and local community-led celebrations began during Matariki 2018. The programme is one of a series of initiatives around the country to mark the 100-year anniversary of the end of the First World War, and there will be a number of Matariki Tu Rākau events between 2018 to 2020.

Over the 3 years, Matariki Tu Rākau plantings will create a national trail of living salutes that complement our time-honoured War Memorials – places where whanau and communities, and visitors, can visit in years to come, to reflect and appreciate the work and sacrifices of our service personnel.

Funding available

Te Uru Rākau (Forestry New Zealand) will provide funding for trees (preferably native trees) to be planted on suitable land that's accessible to the public like parks, places of remembrance, and marae. We'll provide funding through community groups, councils, the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Associations (RNZRSAs), and marae.

For their Matariki Tu Rākau project, local communities decide together:

  • where to plant
  • what to plant
  • who will prepare and maintain the planting areas
  • how to celebrate their living memorial as it begins, and in the future
  • how to get the local community involved.

Matariki is in June to July, near the middle of the planting season for most of the country. The rising of the constellation of Matariki marks a traditional time of harvest, thanksgiving, and remembrance celebrated as the Māori New Year.

Watch a video about one project (1.24)

Who's behind Matariki Tu Rākau?

Matariki Tu Rākau is part of the One Billion Trees programme and is delivered through Te Uru Rākau (Forestry New Zealand). The Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Associations and New Zealand Defence Force are partners.

The development of the programme was also supported by the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, Ministry of Defence, Te Puni Kōkiri and Local Government New Zealand.

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