About

We’re BAF, or The Bishop’s Action Foundation, a charitable organisation that has been working throughout Taranaki since 2005, researching, collaborating and supporting projects that help our communities to flourish.  To achieve this we act as a catalyst for change, supporting changemakers to launch ideas that challenge inequity.  We focus on developing collaborations and solutions that can thrive beyond our involvement so that we can continue to look for more good to be done.

Our website is constantly updated to provide a comprehensive overview of what we do and why we do it.  The Research and Project sections profile what we’re doing and the Our Impact page provides access to our Impact Framework and Strategy along with changemaker stories that demonstrate the impact that is being achieved.

For more information on how to become involved in BAF projects from funding to collaboration and research, get in touch with us here.

As a faith-based organisation we further define BAF’s role using the metaphors of yeast, salt and light:

Yeast

As yeast becomes one with the dough that it permeates and makes a fundamental contribution to enhancing the bread that is created, so the Foundation seeks to respond within a community development model that enables communities and organisations to be empowered as active partners in identifying and responding to their needs.

All of the ingredients to make bread can exist together, but without yeast the loaf will not rise.  Similarly, in most communities the ingredients needed to respond to issues often exist alongside each other, but without a catalyst to bring them together the issue remains unmet.  We see the Foundation as this community catalyst.

Salt

The metaphor of salt suggests another dimension. Salt enhances the flavour of whatever it is added to, although it cannot be seen. In a sense, it stands alongside, yet within, what it is added to. The Foundation therefore has the opportunity to enhance and nurture the communities within which it works.  We can inspire informative critique of our society and its prevailing norms and through such dialogue we can help to inform positive change.

However, salt is not simply a positive element.  Too much salt can ruin the flavour of food and can contribute to negative health conditions.  This aspect of the way salt works serves to remind us that the Foundation should retain a humbleness within its work and should remain strategic in its attempts to achieve change.

Light

The absence of light is darkness and when it is dark it is hard to see what is around you.  Once light is applied then clarity can be achieved.  This is a helpful metaphor to describe the ability of the Foundation to contribute to knowledge through research, capacity building and through the nurture of informed community discussions.

However, it is important to remember that the ability to see what is around may not always be welcome.  The reality of a situation may cause communities, organisations or society to engage with hard questions.  This does not mean that those questions should not be asked, but it does require that the Foundation has the strength to both support and engage in the robust conversations that would follow.

Our focus on justice and our desire to remain humble in our approach reflects Micah 6:8 “…to do justice, and to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God.”

Patron

Our Patron is Archbishop Philip Richardson.

“To be invited as Patron is both very exciting and an honour, as I was part of the visioning and establishment of the Bishop’s Action Foundation over 15 years ago.  I am particularly grateful to have the opportunity to maintain an ongoing relationship with a group of people and an organisation who’s ability to make a transformative difference in Taranaki is both proven and ongoing.”

Research

Think Tank

Research is a fundamental part of our three ‘action’ areas we use to help communities flourish. The research ‘action’ is based on the discussion and exploration of fundamental social issues. What we do is begin research initiatives to discover and understand the root causes of issues and the people who are affected by them, so as to create a solution that has positive and lasting outcomes.

Collaboration

Backbone Organisation

We think that working together can achieve greater outcomes. That’s why BAF works with partners across Taranaki and wider New Zealand to manage and deliver solutions to varying community issues. We see ourselves as the catalyst for change, getting everything in to place and watching it take off. Working with partners allows us to put in the work to get things running, and then hand-over so we can continue to search for and grow new projects.

What we do:

  • Guide vision and strategy among partners
  • Support and enable aligned or innovative activities
  • Establish shared and appropriate measurement practices
  • Build a growing base of support and energy
  • Advance policy change at a system level where this is required for sustainability and lasting change
  • Mobilise funding at seeding, piloting, and operational stages

Projects

Programme and Service Hub

We support and implement a number of projects that create long-term solutions to social issues, helping our community to flourish from the ground up. There’s a lot involved in the creation and running of projects, so we’ve developed our own service hub dedicated to offering start-up support for emerging projects and programmes. BAF calls this ‘Keystone Services’, which is open to initiatives that are in need of support. Take a look below to see if we can help support you in any number of these areas.

Governance

  • Oversight for pilot initiatives including establishing steering groups
  • Appropriate processes and running meetings
  • Support to transition to longer-term governance / entity structures

Management

  • Direction / strategic planning from pilot to fully fledged initiative
  • Policy development and review
  • Developing longer-term organisational culture
  • Establishing effective relationships
  • Building collaboration

Financial Management

  • Account policy and process
  • Formal accounting service for pilot initiatives including financial reporting for small entities
  • Developing longer-term and sustainable funding strategies

Human Resources

  • Employment of staff for pilot projects (employers agent role)
  • Payroll

Risk Management

  • Identifying relevant risks for pilot and beyond
  • Developing risk monitoring processes
  • Strategic risk mitigation

Compliance

  • Reporting on pilot activity to demonstrate impact
  • Keeping up with national and regional policy and legislative developments

Administration

  • Printing and resource development
  • High level administrative services for smaller entities