Coastal bush regeneration workshops

Growing the Coastcare network through bush regeneration workshops

Coastal bush regeneration workshops

Growing the Coastcare network through bush regeneration workshops

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The issue

More and more volunteers are coming under the Manning Coastcare network umbrella and there are also more groups forming in new locations. The challenge is to bring new volunteers and groups up to speed quickly while also providing for existing groups who may not have the knowledge or skills to be as effective as they might be. 

The solution

A training course consisting of four separate morning workshop sessions was run in April and May 2018. The first workshop was classroom based and covered the fundamentals of bush regeneration and plant identification. The following three workshops involved site visits to separate existing bush regeneration areas being worked on by different groups - at Harrington, Old Bar and Black Head. A bush regeneration expert was contracted to give hands-on tuition to the participants. 

The on-site workshops focused on the specific weeds found and how to treat them as well as the identification of the native plants on the site. An aim of the course was for each participant to be able to identify 12 common weed species as well as a similar number of native species. Participants were asked to find and tag specific plants in the bush.

Considerable course information was provided to all participants, in a folder as well as on a memory stick. Reference books and a rainforest key (for computer use) were provided to each of the Manning Coastcare groups. The training course included morning tea and lunch.

Participants preferred the on-site workshops to the classroom-based workshop, and it was agreed to continue these into the future. An additional workshop was held later in 2018 for the new group at Wallabi Point and another workshop is planned for early April for the new group at Manning Point.

All Manning Coastcare members are invited to attend every workshop. They are not publicly advertised as these workshops specifically target existing volunteers working in bush regeneration projects. 

The impact

The increase in knowledge and skills of volunteers is an obvious benefit but there have been other benefits mainly related to improved networking between the groups.

As an example, three members of the long-established Black Head group have spent a very productive morning helping members of the newly formed Manning Point group, on site. Old Bar group have invited the Manning Point volunteers to visit them on site to see what they are doing and what can be achieved. When the workshop for all Manning Coastcare volunteers is held at Manning Point, there will be an opportunity for all volunteers to continue to increase their knowledge and skills as well as knowing they are part of a wider network of like-minded people in the community.

Key facts

  • Bush regeneration workshops are helpful for improving volunteer skills and knowledge
  • Workshops targeting members of landcare network groups help establish better ties between the groups and opportunities for future cooperation and assistance between groups.

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