Community Support - John Ilott Charitable Trust

John Ilott Charitable Trust


This incorporated philanthropic charitable trust, with a capital base of approximately $3 million and making annual grants of $125,000-150,000, was settled in 1960 by Wellington businessman and philanthropist Sir John Ilott.  After his death in 1973, management of the Trust passed to his son, Jack Ilott, who ran the Trust virtually single-handedly for more than 25 years. 

A bachelor with no relatives in NZ, Jack reached an Agreement with the Rotary Club of Wellington (of which Sir John and Jack had both been Presidents) that after his [1999] death, the Rotary Club President, President-elect, and Immediate Past-President would serve as Ilott Trustees committed to implement the family’s vision. 

This arrangement continues to this day, with the following 2016-2017 officer-bearers of the Rotary Club of Wellington currently serving as Ilott Trustees:

Mark Wheeler - RCW President (Chair)

Kerry Prendergast  - RCW Immediate Past-President

Peter Lawson - RCW President-Elect

To minimise the potential discontinuity in governance caused by Trustees serving just one, three-year term, they are supported by an Advisory Committee of five senior Rotarians who may serve two, five-year terms.  While the Trustees retain authority, the Advisory Committee investigates and makes recommendations to the Trustees on matters referred to it.

The Trustees have a duty to grow Trust capital to increase income available for philanthropic use.  To this end, the Trust currently uses Craigs Investment Partners to actively manage the $3 million investment portfolio within guidelines set by the Trustees.

While advised by the Funds Manager and a skilled Treasurer (also a Rotarian), the Trustees are ultimately accountable for financial oversight.

Information for potential applicants:

  • The Trust’s grants criteria are set out in the attached Brochure. (Also note that the Trust only supports New Zealand-based projects and/or individuals.)
  • Applicants must use the attached Application Form.
  • Applications must be posted, we are not able to accept emailed applications.
  • Please note that applications are processed only between 1 October and 10 November. Those received prior to October 1 are set aside and not reviewed until that time-frame.

Download Brochure (PDF 518Kb)

Download 2016 Application Form (PDF 94Kb)

Download List of Grants made by the Trust in 2015

Download Grant Accountability Report template

Nursing Student Receives Jack Ilott Second Chance Award 2013

Award recipient Kerry Shaw with Christine Hurley of the Rotary Club of Wellington

Christine Hurley, a member of the Rotary Club of Wellington and long-time supporter of New Horizons for Women Trust had the pleasure of presenting the 2013 Jack Ilott Second Chance Award at the New Horizons for Women Trust Awards Ceremony in Wellington recently. The recipient of the award was Kerry Shaw, an adult student who is in her final year of nursing at UCOL Masterton.

Christine said “I have been touched and impressed in the past by the impact that a grant of this order can make in the lives of women who are training or retraining, in the face of many challenges for themselves and their families. This year’s recipient is a perfect example of someone who is rising above those challenges and is determined to achieve her goals.”

This certainly describes Kerry who supports herself by working 12 hour shifts in the weekends and on a casual basis during the week as time allows. She is mother to 4 adult children and 2 grandsons.

Kerry says “I became interested in caring for people when I helped care for my dad while he was in the final stages of cancer. I took a while before I took the plunge and in that while I did plan a bit. I saved all of my annual leave for a year and changed from caregiving to being the rest home cook as the hours fitted better with school. The annual leave that I saved saw me through most of my studies. I was pretty frugal with spending them but during the placements they allowed me to work a bit less which was great considering placement is also 40 hours of unpaid work per week. $3000 from the award is huge to me.”

The first thing Kerry did upon receiving the award was to pay all her bills up until the end of her nursing placement. She has put some money aside to pay herself wages when she needs to take time off paid work for study and the rest will go towards the extra petrol and train fares that come with a placement away from home. Kerry says whilst she had had already committed herself to the nursing placement, she was worried about how she would cope financially but winning the award lifted a huge weight off her shoulders.

Kerry reports that her placement with community mental health Upper Hutt is going well and that she has applied to four DHB's with the hope of getting a NETP programme next year which is similar to a one year apprenticeship.

The Jack Ilott Second Chance Award is funded by a grant from the John Ilott Charitable Trust and is awarded by the New Horizons for Women Trust.

Napier Mother Receives Jack Ilott Second Chance Award