The 2020 Koala Smart Program which educates NSW primary and secondary school students about threats to koalas launches this month with the support of local Lions Clubs.
Koala Smart is a Lions Club project, launched last year in Port Macquarie and Kempsey, which empowers students to develop local initiatives to protect the species and is now in its second year with the support of Port Macquarie Koala Hospital.
The project, now funded with $50,000 through the NSW Government's Saving Our Species program and the NSW Koala Strategy, is being aligned this year with the NSW Education and Standards Authority and expanded across all NSW schools.
"Projects from last year's program included creative expressions and community education programs to practical modifications for homes and technological applications, so I am excited to see what students all across NSW come up with this year," Environment Minister Matt Kean said.
Member for Port Macquarie, Leslie Williams, said the program is a great example of how local actions can have statewide benefits.
"I'm proud that students from Port Macquarie and Kempsey have shown outstanding leadership in the state for this very worthy project with Lions Clubs," Mrs Williams said.
Lions District 201N1 Governor Bill Shepherd said the Lions Clubs of N1 are proud to help connect schools and communities with the important work of helping koalas.
"Imagine the difference it could make to the koala's future if each school and their immediate community were able to contribute to koala conservation in their own area," Mr Shepherd said.
Tacking Point Lions Club member and Koala Smart champion Janice McGilchrist said the program achieved outstanding results in its first year.
"This program is now being adopted by Lions clubs across Australia and can be applied to learnings about any threatened species," she said.
Information about Koala Smart is available at koalasmart.org.au.
Anyone wanting more information can contact Janice at email@example.com