Combined forces sees conservation win

TAFE students have joined forces with a local environmental group, resulting in multiple benefits, including the removal of thousands of invasive weeds and the development of positive, ongoing relationships.

Anglesea, Aireys Inlet Society for the protection of Flora and Fauna (ANGAIR) united with Gordon Conservation and Land Management students recently to remove Sallow Wattle and Boneseed from Anglesea’s outskirts.

The day saw strong relationships formed between the two groups, leading many students to continue to volunteer their time with ANGAIR outside of their studies.

ANGAIR committee member Roger Ganley (left), Surf Coast Shire Environment Officer Leanne Rolfe (yellow), ANGAIR committee member Janet Stephens (front right)and property owner Heather Walker (far right) with Gordon TAFE students during a successful weed removal day within Aireys Inlet.
ANGAIR committee member Roger Ganley (left), Surf Coast Shire Environment Officer Leanne Rolfe (yellow), ANGAIR committee member Janet Stephens (front right)and property owner Heather Walker (far right) with Gordon TAFE students during a successful weed removal day within Aireys Inlet.

The students, inspired by their experience, have been participating in local working bees and assisting with the propagation of indigenous plants.

ANGAIR Membership Secretary Janet Stephens said students developed a great rapport with the volunteers, proving age is no barrier when it comes to conservation.

“They were terrific – not only were we able to get a lot of weeding done, but we were also able to pass on our knowledge and experience for the younger generation to take on board,” she said.

TAFE students working hard at removing harmful weeds on the outskirts of Anglesea.
TAFE students working hard at removing harmful weeds on the outskirts of Anglesea.

Gordon Course Coordinator Amanda May said the day was a huge success, with both parties enjoying the benefits of the partnership.

“ANGAIR has benefited from the injection of youthful energy, enthusiasm and muscle.

“In turn, students have learnt a great deal about weed control, working with volunteers, and planning and running a community event,” Ms May said.

In an additional project, Gordon students have also targeted a Bluebell Creeper weed infestation on private properties within Aireys Inlet.

Surf Coast Environmental Officer Leanne Rolfe (centre) and ANGAIR Committee Member Roger Ganley (right) with grateful landowner who made chocolate snowballs for hardworking volunteers.
Surf Coast Environmental Officer Leanne Rolfe (centre) and ANGAIR Committee Member Roger Ganley (right) with grateful landowner who made chocolate snowballs for hardworking volunteers.

Gordon students Kate Skinner and Rachael Beecham prepared site assessment reports for two Anglesea sites and will now develop a management plan for these selected sites.

“Large amounts of the creeper were removed in June, hopefully protecting rare Orchid plants in the future.

“The beautiful orchids were almost completely covered by the Creeper when we first arrived and we were able to make a positive impact, although there is definitely more to be done,” she said.

For more information on coastal, environmental volunteering visit gorcc.com.au. ANGAIR is always on the lookout for new faces and there are lots of ways you can contribute to the group’s conservation efforts. For more information visit angair.com.au.

 

Related blog posts:

The Peninsula Daisy Bush Funds for rare florahttps://gorcc.wordpress.com/2014/03/03/funds-for-rare-flora/
The Gordon TAFE offers a number of courses that have an environmentally sustainable emphasis. Sustainable careers in focushttps://gorcc.wordpress.com/2012/06/06/sustainable-careers-in-focus/

Volunteers make-over Fisherman’s Beach

Twenty-two volunteers from Lend Lease gave Torquay’s Fisherman’s Beach area a makeover this week, building a new pathway and pedestrian bridge, as well as planting 500 native plants in a rehabilitation area.

Lend Lease_Fishermans Beach 1
Lend Lease volunteers helped makover Fisherman’s Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The activities were led by the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee (GORCC) as part of a range of environmental education and volunteering opportunities GORCC provides to schools and groups.

The new pathway provides a link from the Surf Coast Walk to the viewing deck above the Fisherman’s Beach kiosk, which provides great coastal views, with easy access to the kiosk for refreshments. A number of new picnic tables will be installed on the deck in coming weeks.

Environmental weeds along the bank to the north of the deck have been cleared and replaced with native tubestock.

Lend Lease’s Tanya Moscicki said the activity formed part of Lend Lease’s community day, which was established in 1996 to provide Lend Lease people with the opportunity to give back to the communities in which they live and work.

Lend Lease_Fishermans Beach 2
The volunteers planted 500 native plants in a rehabilitation area.

“The weather was amazing so it was great to get out and do something different in the sunshine – everyone enjoyed the day,” she said.

GORCC’s Coast Project Manager, Mike Bodsworth said partnering with volunteers enabled GORCC to achieve much more than would usually be possible.

“We estimate volunteers contribute around a quarter of a million dollars worth of work every year,  from hooded plover monitoring and research projects, to weed control, planting, litter removal and construction.”

“Lend Lease’s team of volunteers also included qualified tradespeople, so it was an ideal chance to build some visitor facilities that have been on the drawing board for a while,” he said.

For more information about how you can get involved in GORCC’s volunteer program,  watch the clip below or visit www.gorcc.com.au/volunteering

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dsc00188GORCC thanks volunteers
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Ford employees got their hands dirty last month as part of a GORCC run program, planting over 1000 coastal saltmarsh plants along the Anglesea River. Photo: Abhishek Sharma.Ford motors towards a healthier coast

Ford motors toward healthier coast

Ford employees descended on the coast last month and planted over 1000 plants along the Anglesea River as part of their community service program.

Ford volunteers with Evan Francis from GORCC’s conservation team. Photo: Abhishek Sharma.

The 34 volunteers, who work in the Powertrain Installation subdivision of Ford, planted about 1000 Coastal Saltmarsh plants alongside the river in a Coastal Saltmarsh area.

The activities were led by the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee (GORCC) as part of a range of environmental education and volunteering opportunities GORCC offers to schools and groups.

Ford Senior Development Engineer Alison Bridger said the activities formed part of the Ford 16 hour community service program and the eighth annual Ford Global Week of Caring.

“Ford Motor Company provides salaried employees with the opportunity to spend two days per year volunteering in the community.

“Our team of engineers planted trees, built protective fencing and learnt about the local Coastal Moonah Woodland restoration projects.

“Mike and Evan from the GORCC conservation team taught us about the types of trees we were planting and protecting and explained what an important part of the local coastal environment they are,” she said.

Ford volunteers planting at Anglesea. Photo: Abhishek Sharma.
Ford volunteers planting at Anglesea. Photo: Abhishek Sharma.

Ms Bridger said everyone enjoyed the chance to get out of the office for a day.

“The work was muddy and exhausting, but very satisfying.”

Anyone can get involved in coastal volunteering.  Its fun, a great way to meet people and it has health benefits too.

GORCC Coast Project Manager Mike Bodsworth said volunteering provides hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of assistance to GORCC each year, mainly through conservation work.

“It’s also a great way for us to build and maintain relationships with local people,” he said.

The many environmental volunteer groups that operate along the GORCC managed coast are always looking for more members, even those able to lend a hand for an hour or two.

“Volunteering is a perfect way to ‘give back’ to the coast you love.

“Getting outside, doing something worthwhile and getting your hands dirty also has multiple health benefits and brings a sense of satisfaction,” Mr. Bodsworth said.

For more information on coastal environmental volunteering visit www.gorcc.com.au or call 5220 5055.

This article appeared in the Surf Coast Times Green the Coast Column

Related blog posts:

dsc00188GORCC thanks volunteers
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