Celebrating 20 years of Port Macquarie Landcare, volunteers past and present will be coming together to recognise the fantastic achievements the group have accomplished on March 27.
Estelle Gough, project manager with Port Macquarie Landcare, said 20 years is a great achievement and for all of that time volunteers have worked very hard to restore and preserve bushland in Port Macquarie.
“We have worked continuously since we started in 1997 and have expanded works to 14 Port Macquarie-Hastings council bushland reserves,” Mrs Gough said.
“We have taken on a further 17 sites, with the success of the EnviroTrust Bid for Wrights Creek and Yarranabee catchments (including Macquarie Nature Reserve) for the six year duration of the bid.”
Mrs Gough said that since 2001, they have successfully completed and acquitted 59 projects, covering 24 hectares, eight of these reserves have been brought to ecological maintenance and three have been given back to council for the low level maintenance required to keep them in good condition.
“We have taken on new sites covering an additional six hectares bringing the sites we manage to 86 hectares,” she said.
“Our role in bringing partnerships with Corrective Services and Work for the Dole participants on board has enabled us to help the Port Macquarie-Hastings council and National Parks and Wildlife Service with works at the Rushcutters, Lighthouse Beach and Sea Acres bushland.”
Landcare Port Macquarie have also been able to secure a total of $704,295 in funding for the local environment.
“We have a membership of 200 individuals who contributed 15,000 volunteer hours last year worth $555,000 to the community, up 2000 hours on the previous year.
“Our partnerships are bringing in at least an additional 3000 hours of ground works this year.”
Mrs Gough also said the group run a community nursery with a yearly income of $25,000 that assists in running the group and its projects.
“The nursery supplies to council, other Landcare groups and people doing revegetation projects across the Hastings.
“We have produced a Weed Identification Manual used by bush regenerators and other Landcare groups along with a website to inform the public of what we are up to and all things environmental.
“Our Facebook page generates over 1,000 visits per week and is used to inform the public of all things environmental.”
She also said that as the group has grown the are now able to complete more than 40 working bees every month.
“We hold approximately 42 working bees per month with attendance average of seven people per working bee on council reserves.
“And in our interaction with the general public we act as educators for raising awareness of all things environmental and our new signage in the reserves is part of the education process.”
If you want to know more or to sign up as a Landcare volunteer please visit landcareportmac.com.au or phone 0432 141 605.