Everyday heroes will be given a leg up in a new community recognition and grants program from Westfield, which seeks to discover and celebrate local people and organisations whose work benefits the local area.

Nominated and voted for by the local community, three Westfield Local Heroes from each centre will be awarded $10,000 each for their affiliated organisations to help their good work continue to grow and thrive, or to help kick-start a brand-new initiative.

Westfield centres across New Zealand are calling on the local community to nominate who they think deserves to be recognised and awarded one of the grants, looking for people who promote social wellbeing and harmony across one or more of the following areas:

Family – supporting families of all types which could include senior programs and domestic and family violence prevention.

Youth Opportunity – creating opportunities for young people which could include improved education, anti-bullying programs, and encouraging positive behaviour and social inclusion.

Inclusion – celebrating inclusion and diversity which could include gender equality, mental health support and increasing cultural celebrations.

Westfield centres within New Zealand include: Albany, Manukau, Newmarket, Riccarton and St Lukes

The program, which will award almost $1.2 million in grants throughout Australia and New Zealand in 2018, is open to people in all areas including business, sport, government, education, sports, welfare, community and not-for-profit.

Westfield Newmarket Centre Manager Paul Gardner said, “Westfield Local Heroes is about finding and celebrating those important people who go above and beyond to help make their community a better place. Westfield Local Heroes is our way of raising awareness of these individuals and their organisations within the local community, by helping their work continue and grow, or by helping them get started in the first place.

With our centres being an important part of the community, we recognise the role we as Westfield can play in shining a light on these important individuals and organisations – we are glad to be able to support them and the positive work they do.

If you know of someone in your community who deserves to be recognised for the good work they do, please nominate them and get others to nominate them too!”

Nominations for Westfield Local Heroes are now open and will close on Wednesday 16th May.

The local finalists will be announced in each Westfield centre and online from mid-June. A final round of public voting will determine each Westfield centre’s Westfield Local Heroes for 2018.

For further information and to nominate your Westfield Local Heroes, visit http://www.westfield.co.nz/local-heroes