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The 33 courses offered will cover ways for people to improve their quality of life without going to great expense.
A limited number of positions in 12 of the courses, including creating and tending food gardens, food preservation, low-cost building techniques, bicycle maintenance, complementary currencies and food security, will be sponsored by members of the Rotary Club of Oamaru.
Co-chairwoman of the Natural Heritage Society (NHS) Nathalie Brown said she welcomed the funding for places on the courses run as part of the Transition Town Oamaru and Waitaki District Project.
"We were delighted when [Rotary president] Helen Webster offered to find funding for a number of places on the courses that would be helpful to people who need to make every dollar count," she said.
Fees for the sponsored courses will range from $15 to $50, and anyone on a benefit or with a community services card can apply.
Work and Income New Zealand staff will be suggesting suitable candidates, she said.
There will also be an autumn school, starting in April, and expressions of interest are being sought from people who would like to organise a course for it.
Brochures detailing the courses can be found at Waitaki district libraries, the Oamaru i-SITE and several cafes and opportunity shops.
Full details are available at www.sustainableoamaru.org.nz.