What is the Future Fund?

The Future Fund backs young New Zealanders to unleash their potential to change the world. It's driven by Kiwi charity Inspiring Stories, backed by people like you, who donate to help build the fund. 

In 2015, more than 200 generous Kiwis collectively donated over $50,000 to kick-start the fund. Together, we've now raised more than $80,000. When we hit $100k, we'll start making distributions across the three key areas that the fund is set up to support – scholarships, seed funding and support. Become a champion – help us get there faster!

Donate – The Future Fund Kiwibank Account: #38-9017-0138250-00

What does your support enable?


Sophie received a scholarship to attend Festival for the Future in 2014. She learnt about the role that young people played in Christchurch after the earthquakes – the Student Volunteer Army. Inspired, she went back home and met with Volunteering Nelson, realising they struggled to engage with young people. Sophie created a partnership, and now every weekend 120 girls from her school are out actively volunteering in the community.

Scholarships will enable more young people like Sophie to participate in life changing programmes like Festival for the Future and Live the Dream.


An alumni of Live the Dream, Melody is developing the 21st century pen-pal platform, Future E, connecting children in China and NZ to learn about their respective culture and language. Melody is passionate about strengthening our China > NZ relations, and the implications for trade if this is done well. Melody has now completed three successful pilot programmes, has had the technology developed, and is now preparing to scale up.

Tailored support can include space to work from, access to mentoring and professional services for promising young entrepreneurs like Melody.


During a volunteering experience in Vanuatu, Bonnie met a solo Mum who had deteriorating eyesight with cataracts in both eyes – and wanted to do something to help. Graduating from our Live the Dream programme we helped her to develop Indigo & Iris, an ethical beauty company that apportions revenue to the Fred Hollows Foundation for restorative sight surgery. Her goal is to cure treatable blindness in the South Pacific by 2025.  

Seed Funding will provide non-repayable grants of $5,000–50,000 for
New Zealand's most promising young social entrepreneurs – like Bonnie.

Young New Zealanders are hungry for change.

A particular drive for me is to protect our most vulnerable. This includes mental health service users and the homeless, both of which I have lived experience of.
— Shreya, Festival for the Future Scholarship Recipient, Auckland
I want to be on a level playing field with the rest of New Zealand’s current and future leaders, and this support will help me accomplish that.
— Te Wai, Festival for the Future Scholarship Recipient, Gisborne
I try to take opportunities when I can, and to be inspired to do more for my town and country. I wanted to attend Festival in past years but have [financially] had trouble getting there.
— Jonelle, Festival for the Future Scholarship Recipient, Wairoa

I'm in. Are you?

Here's a few people who have backed the Future Fund. To meet a few more, check out the Backers page.

Hori Haweti Barsdell
Youth Worker, Whakatane
Donated $50

"I'm supporting the Future Fund because I believe our rangitahi need access to opportunities and support to unleash their potential, especially young people from more rural and provincial areas."

Jinty MacTavish
Councillor, Dunedin
Donated $250

"I'm backing young New Zealanders because they inspire me. Courage, energy, determination, long-term vision - these are things the world needs a lot of right now, and they're things young kiwis have in spades."

Guy Ryan
Chief Executive, Wellington
Donated $1,000

"We live in a world with complex and urgent problems that need solving. I'm backing young New Zealanders because they have the potential to completely transform our world for the better."

Who’s behind the Future Fund?


Inspiring Stories is a registered Kiwi charity operating nationwide with the vision to see every young New Zealander unleash their potential to change the world. Since launching in 2011, we've developed an impressive track record of programmes and partnerships, supporting more than 5,000 young New Zealanders. In 2015, our CEO & Founder, Guy Ryan, was awarded Young New Zealander of the Year.


Our core programmes:

Live the Dream is a intensive 9-week accelerator programme that develops young social entrepreneurs and their ventures. The programme runs every summer in AKL + WGN + CHCH.

Festival for the Future is a vibrant national event that celebrates youth-led Kiwi innovation, supporting the next generation to spark and grow their ideas for a better world.

Future Leaders backs young people in provincial New Zealand to make a difference in their own backyard. The 2016 pilot is happening in Buller, Manawatu, Whakatane and Opotiki.