Community involvement crucial in environmental protection

 

If you didn’t know where to look, you would hardly notice them. But for those well versed in cane toad’s habits and habitats the quest to eradicate the estimated 200 million amphibians seems insurmountable. But you’ll be hard pressed to see that attitude here.

Armed with torches, buckets and good ears to tap into calling toads, volunteers and field workers in the Clarence Valley undertake night-time cane toad surveys across multiple private properties.

Community efforts and collaborations between government and local bodies such as the Clarence Landcare, Clarence Valley Conservation in Action (CIA) Landcare Group, Department of Primary Industries, NSW Local Land Services and the Office of Environment and Heritage are crucial in helping stop the spread of invasive species.

Local Landcare Coordinator for Clarence Landcare, Debbie Repschlager, says projects such as community and professional Cane Toad Control and trialling the of Cane Toad Detection Dogs are all tools used in the crucial role of supporting local ecology.

“We are trying to reduce and halt the Southern Front of cane toad migration and it is a big undertaking. The project covers a large area, over 30,000 hectares, with very diverse environments, but for us it’s as much about community participation and education as it is about on-ground work,” Debbie says.

“Since this project began in 2019, we have collected 13,361 mature and juvenile cane toads and 565,232 tadpoles. That’s 578, 593 toxic species removed from the local environment! That is a lot, but there’s a long road ahead of us.”

With females being able to produce between 8,000 – 35,000 eggs at a time, usually breeding twice a year and few predators to control the population, the job at hand is a long-term approach.

“It’s what we do” says Debbie.

“Landcare is about a long-term approach and thankfully we are supported in our endeavours. With this project we worked with Border Ranges Richmond Valley Landcare Network and the Office of Environment and Heritage. We share information, resources and landholder contact details in overlapping areas. There’s no such thing as borders with invasive species and it takes a strategic community approach to deal with them.

The economic cost of invasive species in Australia is large. A study published in 2016 (using data from 2011/12) found the combined estimated cost of invasive species was $13.6 billion in the 2011-12 financial year. In 2019 the Invasive Species Council of Australia released a paper advising that an estimated $155 million over just five years would be needed to deal with invasive species in Australia.

 

 

Landcare NSW CEO, Dr Adrian Zammit is not surprised.

“The cost on invasive species to our economy and ecology is not to be underestimated. You have an incredibly delicate ecosystem versus thousands of different species who see opportunity and jump on it. These are animals, birds, plants, insects and other invertebrates, fungi, parasites and marine creatures. There’s thousands of them killing off our native species who have few, if no, defences against them.”

But we are not without hope.

“In the NSW Landcare network alone you have citizen scientists, industry leaders and the average concerned landcarer dealing with them. They are upskilling and educating themselves in best practice and management.

Our landcare group’s work within all borders, both local and state, to ensure that vulnerable species are supported and maintained. Each region may have its own unique problems, but they are network of dedicated individuals and communities that want to see their native environment survive and thrive.

NSW Landcare Program Manager Natasha English agrees saying that all groups, regardless of their location, are on the forefront on invasive species management.

“Every one of our landcare groups across NSW is dealing with pests and weeds. From madeira vine to feral cat and dog control, they are part of a strategic approach, working with government agencies, to tackle a wide range of biosecurity threats. With bushfires, droughts and flood exacerbating pest control through migration of species you’ve got to work towards being responsive to each challenge and I believe we are doing just that.”

Image courtesy of Clarence Landcare – Cane Toad Control – 

Thousands of new trees to be planted across Greater Sydney

The NSW Government is investing nearly $5 million to plant thousands of new trees across Greater Sydney to expand the city’s green canopy in partnership with Greening Australia and Landcare NSW.

Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Rob Stokes said the partnerships will see 172,000 new trees planted in Greater Sydney’s parks, schools and communities over the next two-and-a-half years, with the first 32,000 to be planted by the end of 2020.

“We have connected with leading environmental organisations to increase our tree canopy cover, cool our communities and create great new green public spaces across the city,” Mr Stokes said.

“New trees today mean more healthy shaded public spaces and beautiful tree-lined streets for communities to enjoy now and for years to come.”

The NSW Government has signed two contracts totaling $4.77 million for:
–  100,000 trees to be planted across Greater Sydney, with a focus on Western Sydney with Landcare NSW; and
–  72,000 trees to be planted across parks and community spaces and schools across Greater Sydney with Greening Australia.

The two new partnerships will contribute to the NSW Government’s ambitious target to plant one million trees by 2022.

Landcare NSW CEO Dr Adrian Zammit said the project will help support the development of green spaces across Greater Sydney.

“With the support of the Greater Sydney Landcare Network we will help grow native canopy to cool our city with Landcarers helping landowners and community members participate in tree planting activities.

“Our shared challenge is not only to get the trees in the ground but to monitor and provide education to ensure they survive.”

Greening Australia’s Nature in Cities Director Paul Della Libera said the ‘Cooling the Schools’ program will establish native habitats and help cool urban areas.

“By working together with schoolchildren across Greater Sydney to increase the tree canopy cover in their neighbourhoods, we can lower temperatures and create healthier communities for both people and wildlife. This is particularly important in urban areas given rising summer temperatures.

“We will be partnering with Western Sydney University to identify and prioritise the communities with the lowest canopy cover and greatest vulnerability to the urban heat island effect.”

MEDIA:

Jodie Lovel Landcare NSW | 0439 316 151 

Courtney Taylor DPIE | 0499 699 226

Environmental leaders call for $4 billion boost to support economic recovery

MEDIA RELEASE

15th April, 2020

Environmental leaders call for $4 billion boost to support Australia’s economic recovery

Landcare NSW is one of nearly 100 environmental and farming groups that have signed a proposal to the Australian Government to create 24,000 jobs in land rehabilitation through a post-pandemic stimulus package.

The $4 billion plan would apply the skills and infrastructure of these respected organisations to the massive task of rebuilding the economy when the COVID 19 situation transitions from crisis to recovery.

The goal is to create jobs and economic stimulus by activating land management and conservation projects across the nation.

Landcare NSW CEO, Dr Adrian Zammit, says the nation-building proposal represented a remarkable show of unity by organisations that offer an extraordinary depth of experience, skill and commitment to conservation and agriculture.

The stimulus package would get the recently unemployed back into jobs where they would be engaged in meaningful work to help the land recover after the devastation of natural disasters.

“Drought, followed by catastrophic bushfires and flash flooding, have wreaked havoc on farms, landscapes and communities, and on-ground recovery work has been curtailed due to regulations to contain the virus,” says Dr Zammit.

“A national environmental stimulus package will help communities and landscapes to recover from the economic impact of COVID 19 and the financial and social impacts of the recent natural disasters.”

“Across Landcare alone there are tens of thousands of Australians actively involved in environmental action across all types of land tenure.”

“Stimulating community Landcare offers a huge opportunity to employ a workforce in improving the sustainability of our communities, environment and agricultural sectors,” says Dr Zammit.

Jobs in areas such as weed and pest control, river and catchment restoration and the repair of habitat and infrastructure damaged by fire would ensure tens of thousands of workers across NSW would be supported beyond the immediate crisis. The program would include funding for private land conservation by farmers and other land managers, tree-planting in urban and rural areas, coastal habitat restoration in partnership with communities and the fishing industry and marine plastics clean-up projects.

Media Release: 20 04 15 – Environmental Leaders call for $4 billion boost to support Australia’s economic recovery

*Release updated from 80 to 100. May 14th 2020

Opinion editorial (NLN): A Landcare-led recovery is taking place across Australia

Opinion editorial courtesy of the National Landcare Network and Dr Patrick O’Connor

Landcare has a long history and has been an example to the world of the mobilisation of people to a sustainability ethic and the formation of an incredible number of groups focusing on local environments.

However, Landcare is commonly mistaken as only being an on-ground implementation program – engaging people in projects to plant trees, manage introduced species, protect endangered species, or otherwise halt environmental decline.

All these are actions that individuals and groups can undertake beneath a Landcare banner, but they are not what Landcare is really about.

Landcare is a social movement for managing change. The movement is 30 years old and arose because Australians naturally care about places we know; we want to connect to people we share ideas with and we feel part of the environmental awareness that has grown alongside agricultural change in post-war Australia.

Tens of thousands of Australians are attracted to Landcare, often as their first contribution to environmental action, because it gives them a chance to express their desire for sustainability and environmental protection through action.

Landcarers often find their voices by first using their hands.

Landcare in Australia is a collective movement and the National Landcare Network (NLN) is the representative voice of Landcarers at the National level.

The NLN and state are accountable to the collective of community Landcare networks and groups.

It is the chain of representation that connects community Landcare groups to the national conversation and ensures the Landcare movement fulfils its role as a movement of change management.

In order to be the best leader of change it is necessary to understand the movement and listen to representatives from all parts of the movement.

Without representative processes Landcare could become a project management business or another part of natural resource bureaucracy.

You are part of the Landcare movement if you have a say in project priorities, if you have a say in adapting actions to local conditions, have a say in bringing innovation to environmental stewardship, if you have a say in fair distribution of funding, and if you have a say in representative organisations from your group up to the NLN.

If you don’t have these things your project falls short of the Landcare ideal.

Why does all this matter? Because environmental variability throws real challenges at our communities, our management of land and water and our economy.

When environmental change is part of natural cycles we learn to live with and adapt to the change.

When the changes come at us from a drying climate or a bushfire, or left field from a virus, we mitigate what we can and we adapt as we must.

Landcare exists because tens of thousands of people recognise that we are more resilient together to tackle the challenges of local environmental degradation, natural disasters, climate change, and species extinction.

Landcare participation is a way of building networks and skills for adapting and responding to changes expected and unexpected.

The key is to be a participant in action, in a learning and sharing environment, with others, and in Landcare organisations where each voice is valued.

It is not easy to see our way past the natural disasters that have hit Australia hard in the last few years, compounded by the massive disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic.

What we do know is that human health, the environment, society and the economy are interwoven and positive actions on one can have benefits for the others.

When the economy starts to wake from the current hibernation it will need to stretch and yawn for a while before it is fully alert.

Stimulating community Landcare activities across Australia offers a huge opportunity to employ an underutilised workforce in improving the sustainability of our community and agricultural sector, and the environment on which it depends.

Landcare programs can be upscaled to get people working immediately and we should take the opportunity to employ Australians in helping to repair the natural infrastructure on which our healthy society depends.

Dr Patrick O’Connor is Chair of the National Landcare Network

Opinion Editorial: Landcare is central to natural disaster response, recovery and resilience building

While Australia grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic which poses an acute threat to our wellbeing and way of life, climate change and its many manifestations remains a serious and chronic threat to life as we know it.

Unpredictable and devastating shifts in our weather patterns are creating havoc in the bush, with devastating impacts such as prolonged and severe drought and widespread bushfires, like the unprecedented events we witnessed last summer.

The cost of these natural disasters to our communities, our economy and our environment is incalculable. Is this the new normal given that an ever-increasing human population may be pushing the limits of our planet’s natural systems? If so, how do we as a society best respond to these challenges to be prepared to respond, recover and build resilience to future natural disasters?

Government cannot solve such complex and large-scale natural calamities alone. As we are seeing with the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, it needs to partner and work together with communities to be able to prioritise, and get support for, on-ground action that delivers real outcomes.

This also applies to other common natural disasters in Australia, such as drought and bushfires. Indeed, the federal government’s National Strategy for Disaster Resilience- Community Engagement Framework (2013) recognises that emergency management is a shared responsibility for all of society.

By working directly with communities, governments can provide a sense of hope, build community resilience and increase preparedness for the next drought, bushfire or pandemic.

By working with and through community-led charity organisations, government can leverage its investment by tapping into an army of volunteers, as well as their social capital and the intimate knowledge and expertise of their local landscape for lasting and effective solutions.

Landcare, both at a state and federal level, can provide these benefits to government. Today, in NSW alone, there are tens of thousands of Landcarers aggregated in thousands of groups. Not only are they passionate and highly knowledgeable on matters pertaining to environmental protection and agricultural systems, they also deliver enormous value to NSW. A recent study indicated that Landcare in NSW delivers more than $500 million a year in value, a massive return on investment.
 
Landcare’s ability to punch way above its weight hinges on its massive network and social capital that connects people at the local, district, regional, state and national scale. This unique combination is one of Landcare’s secret sauces – the other is its people’s intimate knowledge of their local communities, farms and landscapes, essential ingredients to finding solutions tailored for local needs.

Landcarers live and work in local communities and are part of the social fabric: for example, they volunteer with the Rural Fire Service and other community organisations, many of whom are on the front line of natural disaster management.

They are farmers and landholders dealing with prolonged drought, business owners dealing with difficult economic conditions; above all they are local citizens committed to making a difference.
NSW Landcarers have been heavily involved in emergency responses, recovery and resilience-building work for many years and have delivered great value to their communities in this area.

Landcare’s activities are many and varied. For example, Landcare is a critical source and channel of communication to communities; Landcare supports farmers with government funded relief programs, raises awareness with their local communities of Rural Support Services Network, and organises social events, get-togethers and workshops to help communities cope with the stress.

Landcare organises educational programs and workshops to help raise awareness and best-practice in relation to natural disasters and building community resilience. Furthermore, Landcare undertakes on-ground projects related to natural disaster recovery and preparedness and leverages government funding to attract additional funding from corporates, philanthropy and local government for local projects.

Landcare wants to do more, much more, and it is ready.

Given what Landcare does, and considering the enormous benefits that Landcare has so consistently delivered these past 30 years, why would government not choose to partner with Landcare as a delivery vehicle for its natural disaster response, recovery and resilience-building programs?

Landcare NSW COVID-19 update – April 2020

As of Sunday, 30th March the Federal Government announced that no more than 2 people can be in an enclosed space within 1.5m of each other & any non-essential movements is to be restricted.

This also included recommendations that any people over the age of 70, those with a chronic illness aged over 60 or who have a chronic medical condition that leaves them vulnerable, and Indigenous Australians over the age of 50 should stay at home as much as practical.

Exemptions include: People of the same household gathering together; Funerals, where a maximum of 10 people can gather; Weddings, where there can be up to five people; Family units, which is understood to mean immediate family.

The National Cabinet also gave “strong guidance” for all Australians to stay home unless people were: Shopping for “food and necessary supplies”; Providing medical, healthcare or compassionate services; Exercising in a group of two; Working or studying if they could not do so remotely

For many of our Landcare groups this is a difficult task, however we would remind our members who have insurance through Community Underwriting that they released a statement on March 20 stating that: “The advice they have given for Landcare groups holding events is as follows: We are unable to cover events where the attendees exceed either the current federal or state advice for public gatherings and visits to vulnerable groups; Where events are conducted with attendees less than the government recommendation, we recommend an organisation to undertake a risk assessment taking in the government advice.”

Additionally, NSW Workplace Health & Safety has released guidelines to help guide you & your activities during this time.

The Federal Government has also released a Stimulus Package to support households & businesses & address the significant economic consequences of the Coronavirus. Further information is attached. Landcare Groups should talk to their financial advisers to see if they are eligible.

We do not take these times lightly, but we continue to work with all staff and partners across NSW to ensure that all projects & programs are supported beyond this crisis. We remind ourselves that Landcare has survived the devastation of drought, flood and fire. It will survive COVID-19.

Our programs and partnerships are still in place & on track. Grant and funding bodies are aware of current restrictions regarding deliverables and will work with groups to negotiate deadlines. The NSW Landcare Program team is working directly with all coordinators to ensure that any deliverables are flexible and realistic. Should you wish to discuss your concerns, please contact Natasha English via email nenglish@landcarensw.org.au.

Above all, practice healthy hygiene & always wash your hands for at least 20 seconds.

Landcare NSW

Resources:

Fact Sheet – Supporting Businesses

Federal Government Stimulus Package further information

Landcare NSW COVID-19 Communications Update

A message to the National Landcare Network community regarding COVID-19

From National Landcare Network Chair, Dr Patrick O’Connor

To all members, associates and Stakeholders of the Australian National Landcare movement, we live in extraordinary times. Many areas of our vast nation are still suffering the impacts and aftermath of drought, floods and bushfires.

On top of all this we are now also facing the COVID-19 health crisis and associated business and economic strain.

We have faced, bushfires, drought and floods, and even financial crises before, but we have not in most of our lifetimes faced a health crisis of the scale of the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 health crisis is not regionally restricted as other recent environmental challenges are, and is affecting us all either directly or indirectly and will continue to do so in ways we cannot yet foresee.

We must remain informed of government direction in dealing with the spread of COVID-19 and protect ourselves as individuals, our families, friends and associates and our organisations, and our broader communities.

One of the many great strengths of the Landcare movement is that it is community based, community driven and founded in the genuine caring and empathy of its members for those around them in the face of challenging circumstances and uncertainty.

We have seen these characteristics in our members through the drought, floods and bushfires and will see them again throughout 2020.

There are countless sources of excellent advice available to the general public and I add here only a few suggestions to assist Landcarers to manage Landcare-related issues in the coming months;

  • Grants: Many groups will be in the middle of completing grant-funded projects with State, Federal or other granting agencies. These grants may be for activities which are not currently possible, and many will require reporting and reconciliations which may be difficult to complete due to incomplete actions or data and reporting resource interruptions.Should you find yourself with project and reporting interruptions, we encourage you to contact your granting body to seek the necessary extensions, exemptions, and instructions to address the situation. It is wise to prepare ahead of the deadlines and granting bodies should be preparing for this to occur.
  • Communication: At times like these it is important to communicate effectively and openly with each other, especially staying in touch with those in your networks who are isolated and vulnerable. Who might benefit from your contact and support in these times? What are the best ways to communicate for people you are connected to (many of the most isolated and vulnerable people in our communities are not easily contacted through social media). Communication also helps to maintain our sense of community, belonging and unity of purpose. All of these are important to coping and recovery in our networks and communities.
  • Plan and Prepare for recovery: Opportunities for recovery will come when circumstances change and the next months are a good time for planning and preparing for a positive future.
  • Disruptions: At all times heed official advice and restrictions in place to manage the current circumstances. Project disruptions may be unavoidable, challenges should be discussed and unnecessary risk avoided.
  • Keep things normal: Keep operating as normally as possible within the restrictions on gatherings and as advice changes. Try to do keep doing things normally as much as possible, including Landcare activities, but modify behaviours to fit current circumstances.
  • Sources of information: Use your State or Territory Landcare Peak body to track down key sources of information you will need over the next few months, and visit information sources regularly to make sure to keep up to date. Your Landcare Peak body may be providing regular updates. You can provide feedback and stories for sharing.
  • Do new things, think about ways in which you can do things differently during this time, share those thoughts and ideas with the NLN and others. Can Landcaring become a virtual activity, does this offer an opportunity to engage with groups we don’t usually think of?
  • Reach out, during this time reach out just a little further beyond those you normally talk too, build new relationships, extend your network to the next level.

The National Landcare Network continues to work towards the objectives of the Australian Landcare movement and will be working to keep Landcare strong in these challenging times.

Regards
Patrick O’Connor
Chair – National Landcare Network
Landcare Association of South Australia
NLN Board Delegate

Resources: National Landcare Network Communique – A message to the Australian Landcare movement regarding COVID-19 

On behalf of

Stephanie Cameron
Landcare New South Wales
NLN Board Delegate
Josie Kelman
Landcare Tasmania
NLN Board Delegate
Sue McKinnon
Landcare Northern Territory
NLN Board Delegate
 Keith Bradby
 West Australian Landcare Network
NLN Board Delegate
Maxine Cooper
Landcare Australian Capital Territory
NLN Board Delegate
Geoff Elliot
Queensland Water and Land Carers
NLN Board Delegate
Kaye Rodden
Landcare Victoria Inc.
NLN Board Delegate
Jim Adams
Chief Executive Officer
National Landcare Network

A message from the CEO: Landcare NSW’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19)

Given the spread of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) and its declaration by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as a public health emergency on 30th January 2020, we are taking action to help ensure the safety, health and wellbeing of our Landcare community, partners and supporters.

COVID-19 is having a substantial impact on communities and individuals across the world. Our thoughts go out to those who have been directly impacted by this crisis.

At Landcare NSW, we will be issuing regular internal policy updates to keep our team members informed and safe. We are relying heavily on the advice provided at both the Federal and State level.

We are in the advantageous position of staff being spread throughout a state-wide network, many working remotely, as of today (17 March 2020) we have instructed all our staff, if possible, to work from home. We suggest that all Coordinators work directly with their host organisations to discuss their work arrangements as guided by the Department of Health.

Interstate travel has been stopped until further notice with meetings run via video conferencing.

Due to the fluid nature of this situation we will continue to review our position based on government advice and will notify you if there is any change to this.

At present we are working with stakeholders and partners to address any concerns and contingency measures relating to any projects our network facilitates.

Under the guidance of the State and Federal Department of Health, the most effective way to help prevent the spread of viruses, is to practise good hygiene and social distancing. This is additionally crucial for those who visit or work with vulnerable groups.

Good hygiene includes:
• covering your coughs and sneezes with your elbow or a tissue
• disposing of tissues properly
• washing your hands often with soap and water, including before and after eating and after going to the toilet for at least 30 seconds
• using alcohol-based hand sanitisers
• cleaning and disinfecting surfaces
• if you are sick, avoiding contact with others and staying more than 1.5 metres away from people

Read more about protective measures against coronavirus on the World Health Organization website.

Social distancing includes:
• staying at home when you are unwell
• avoiding large public gatherings if they’re not essential
• keeping a distance of 1.5 metres between you and other people whenever possible
• minimising physical contact, especially with people at higher risk such as older people and people with existing health conditions
• If you have returned from an overseas trip you are now required to self-quarantine to avoid future spread of the infection.

Find out more about social distancing and avoiding public gatherings and visits to vulnerable groups.

You should also follow our advice for travellers and advice for public gatherings and visits to vulnerable groups.

Additionally, we advise that if you are planning to, or are holding Landcare activities, you follow the state and federal governments advice listed above and regularly check their websites for updated advice to ensure that everyone emerges from COVID-19 safe and sound.

CEO Report – March 2020

This summer’s events are a reminder of the scale and complexity of the challenges that we face in protecting our environment, our productive and sustainable farms, and the well-being of all our communities.

For Landcare NSW, 2020 has started at a frenetic pace with lots of key activities underway.

Landcare NSW is actively pursuing a number of partnerships and funding arrangements to benefit the Landcare community including a partnership with the Biodiversity Conservation Trust (BCT). Landcare NSW received a funding deed for $1.37 million last month which will cover the cost for rolling out a number of educational activities that will bring together people such as landowners and highlight what the BCT is offering to people on the land and in our communities.

Landcare NSW’s partnership with the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE), that was announced at the Trees in the House event in November, has been formalised with the signing of an MOU for the Greater Sydney Landcare Network to deliver the planting of 100,000 trees in the Greater Sydney region as part of the NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s Five Million Trees program.

With all our partnerships, we insist that all partnership programs and projects are co-designed, co-delivered, co-managed and co-governed. All these partnership programs and projects are co-governed by Joint Management Committees made up of leaders and senior executives from the two partner organisations, similar to the one we have with Local Land Services (LLS) for the delivery of the NSW Landcare Program.

Landcare NSW signed an MOU with Saving Our Species in February to promote and raise additional funding for the program with non-government sources. Linda Bell spoke to the Landcare NSW Council at its February Council meeting.

Gotcha4Life and Landcare NSW have also entered a partnership, and an Expression of Interest has gone out to all Landcare regions to seek funding to deliver Mental Fitness Weeks in rural and regional areas across the state in 2020.

Late in 2019, Landcare NSW submitted a business case for $20 million for the delivery of activities related to disaster relief, recovery and preparedness. This was submitted at the beginning of the disaster season, since then the problem has obviously escalated significantly. I believe Landcare should be the go-to vehicle for the delivery of these kinds of services. The Chair, our Government Relations Manager and I had a meeting with Minister Adam Marshall to discuss the business case and the role Landcare can play and these discussions are ongoing.

Corporate partnerships are also an area Landcare NSW is developing and exploring as the interest in corporate volunteering in bushfire affected areas continues to increase.

March Update – NSW Landcare Program 2019 – 2023

The NSW Landcare Program has well and truly established a solid foundation with 72 local Landcare Coordinators and 12 Regional Landcare Coordinators now working to support the networks and groups across the state.

The NSW Landcare Program is a state, regional and local investment in the partnership between Local Land Services and Landcare NSW, empowering people to take action on local problems and deliver outcomes across local and regional issues.

The NSW Landcare and Local Land Services Conference held in Broken Hill in October 2019, demonstrated the strength of the partnership with government and highlighted the social networks, individual and group efforts that are the lifeblood of the Landcare movement in NSW.

The NSW Landcare Program 2019 – 2023 builds on the previous Local Landcare Coordinator Initiative, and is a collaborative endeavour of Local Land Services and Landcare NSW, supported by the NSW Government and overseen by a Joint Management Committee.

**In May 2020, the program will bring all coordinators and a member of our host organisations to Dubbo with the theme of “Nurturing our Networks”. The event will introduce the program and its components and how volunteer members and coordinators will be supported to work toward delivering on the program outcomes.  An important part of the program will be to demonstrate through data, the critical value Landcare provides in addressing the current environmental challenges.

 A key focus of the gathering is providing the opportunity for networking, peer to peer learning and information to support the coordinators and hosts in the work they do.

To find out who the Local and Regional Landcare Coordinators for your area are click below:

Regional and Local Landcare Coordinators

** UPDATE – As at 18 March 2020, the Joint Management Committee met to discuss the NSW Landcare Program and the perceived risk to bringing everyone in the Landcare Program across the state to meet in May in Dubbo.

Effectively it was felt that due to the uncertainty around infection rates of COVID-19 and other complicating factors, it would be unfair to ask everyone to attend in person from around the State.

We will postpone this event and work toward a new date that is suitable.

We would ask that you immediately cancel any accommodation and travel arrangements.