About The Dowse Foundation

The Dowse Foundation was established in 2003 to support a major redevelopment of The Dowse and form a basis for ongoing support of the visual arts in Lower Hutt through the museum. The Foundation successfully raised $2 million from individual donors, businesses and philanthropic organisations which unlocked matched funding from central government and the Hutt City Council.

The Foundation’s purposes, as laid out in its deed of charitable trust, include:

  • to stimulate and sustain interest in The Dowse and to extend its educational and cultural influence throughout the community
  • to facilitate public access to and enjoyment of the arts and in particular the visual arts and craft through the work of The Dowse
  • to support projects, including capital projects, which the Trust has adopted as being of specific benefit to The Dowse
  • to establish, maintain and increase the Trust Fund to assist The Dowse to meet its objectives

Today, as an independent charitable trust we raise and manage funds that are distributed on a regular basis to support projects at The Dowse that transcend its core Council-funded activities, create value for local communities, and reinforce The Dowse’s reputation as a world-class arts institution.

Our focus is long-term and strategic. We build relationships with supporters, advocate for the importance of art and culture, and encourage ambition and excellence at The Dowse. Through prudent management of an endowment fund, we ensure The Dowse will undertake ambitious and meaningful projects today and into the future.

We gratefully acknowledge all those organisations and individuals who have so generously supported The Dowse for nearly five decades now, and welcome new businesses, individuals and organisations who wish to join us in this work. Donations and bequests can be made to our general fund, which is managed by the Foundation Trustees, or dedicated to a specific purpose. You can see the kinds of projects dedicated and general funds have supported on the Outcomes of our work page of this website.

To discuss how we might work together, we warmly invite you to contact The Dowse Foundation’s Chair, Rick Wells, for an initial conversation.

Rick Wells
Chair, The Dowse Foundation
E chair@dowsefoundation.org.nz